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Earlier this week, Alfonso Soriano indicated that he would be willing to waive his no-trade clause if the Chicago Cubs wanted to trade him. It removed one potential hurdle to sending Soriano away, but, relative to his ample contract, it was a small hurdle.

Now a much bigger hurdle has been knocked down.

A source has told ESPNChicago that the Cubs would be willing to absorb a “high percentage” of the $60+ million remaining on Soriano’s deal over the next three and a half years. Depending on how high that percentage is – it would have to be at least half – the Cubs might actually be able to deal Soriano to an AL team, where he could serve as a moderately acceptable DH.

Soriano hasn’t exactly helped the Cubs – he’s been mired in a month-long slump – but he does still have life in his bat. For all of our complaints about Soriano as the team’s starting left fielder, he is regularly above average with the bat (outside of his injury-plagued 2009 season, Soriano’s OPS+ has been 122, 119, and 112 with the Cubs). This year, even with his current deep slump, he’s got a 98 OPS+, which means he’s been just about average.

Moving Soriano would open up an outfield spot not only for a prospect like Brett Jackson, but it would afford the Cubs the opportunity to pursue a big-time bat for a corner outfield position – either in free agency or trade – something they haven’t been able to do since before the 2008 season.

  • Fishin Phil

    I hope we take the time to find out what we have in the system for outfielders before we go chasing a free agent outfielder.

  • Toosh

    Exactly. Trading Soriano while not having to pay all the money left on his contract is a no-lose deal for the Cubs. They save money, they get rid of a bad influence, they get better defensively and they get younger. Also, there has to be an OF in their system that can put up the numbers he has this season.

  • Joe

    I’m sure that if he does get traded, we’ll ignore all minor league and utility outfielders and just use DeWitt again.

    • EQ

      How’s Colvin doing in AAA? I think he’d be a natural choice to bring up and see if he can get back to last years productivity level? Let’s not forget his 20 hrs last year was supposed to be an important part of this year..

      • Jeff

        He’s hitting better, but still has a lot of the same problems. He’s hitting .274 and has a bunch of extra base hits, but he is still striking out every 4 to 5 at bats. I do think if Soriano or Fukudome go anywhere, that Colvin has to get the full time job for the remainder of the year. We pretty much know what we’ve got with Blake DeWitt, and he plays several other positions, so getting him at bats won’t be an issue. Colvin needs to see major league pitching every day, hopefully Quade won’t be managing for his job at the end of the year again and he will play the young guys down the stretch.

        • Toosh

          Hopefully Quade’s future as manager has already been decided.

        • Joe

          I wasn’t saying I want DeWitt in the outfield. That was one of the moves I really didn’t like. Every time I think about, I remember him flipping on to his head, while trying to set his feet. I don’t even know how he managed to do that.

          If both Fukudome and Soriano get moved, I would like to see Colvin and Jackson as their replacements. Absolutely.

          The thing I didn’t like about Quade putting DeWitt in the outfield was that he had three outfielders (not including who was being replaced) on the bench. Two of those three had been called up specifically to replace injured outfielders. It was liked they got called up for nothing.

          • oso

            To hell with it, trade Colvin too and put Zambrano in left, he’s got the best (power) bat in the bunch.

      • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

        He’s doing what he normally does: .274/.289/.516. He’s Jeff Francoeur reincarnated as a lefty and without the amazing arm.

  • TWC

    I love how that pic of Soriano makes it look like he has massive boobs. Maybe he can be our next series representative?

    • Joe

      As soon as we do, we’ll win three in a row and Soriano will start a hot streak. I like it.

    • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

      Ha. Maybe next time.

    • necubsfan

      He’s the Morganna of NL outfielders.

  • RY34

    Fine, now just get rid of him already!

  • awesome

    as long as quade is here, Jackson won’t get much playing time. maybe colvin will, Dewitt.

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