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alfonso soriano hittingAlfonso Soriano has had the appropriate conversations with Chicago Cubs management about the possibility of a trade, and the 37-year-old outfielder is apparently now on board.

Soriano, who is sitting out tonight – purportedly on a regularly-scheduled day off – met with Theo Epstein and Dale Sveum last night (Carrie Muskat) and confirmed that he was willing to accept a trade to certain teams, one of which is the New York Yankees. That, of course, is notable, because Soriano/Yankees rumors have been swirling since the wee hours of Tuesday morning.

With only one more year left on his contract with the Cubs, and seeing that the team is not going to compete for a playoff spot this year – and maybe not next year, either – Soriano told the media that, while he’s comfortable in Chicago, “sometimes we have to move.” (Patrick Mooney) When asked about how serious a trade possibility now seems, Soriano wouldn’t call it 100%, but said it’s the closest it’s been in recent years. (Carrie Muskat)

Although it may not happen tonight, it now very much sounds like Soriano will be dealt before next Wednesday’s non-waiver Trade Deadline (though, with his contract, he’d be easy enough to trade in August, as well). The Cubs have been fielding calls from teams other than the Yankees, and it remains to be seen – if ever – what teams are on Soriano’s list. We know, for now, only about the Yankees. And, let’s be frank, trading Soriano to the Yankees makes sense for so many reasons that they are probably the strong favorite.

UPDATE: Soriano tells the media (Carrie Muskat) that today’s day off was Dale Sveum’s idea, and was to give Soriano a chance to “clear his mind.” That strikes me as a very good, respectful approach.

UPDATE 2 (8:18pm CT): Theo Epstein tells Carrie Muskat that Soriano asked for a couple days to think things over before anything becomes official, so we won’t be hearing anything tonight (about Soriano officially being on board with a hypothetical trade, let alone the completion of an actual trade; that said, it sounds like he’s OK with a trade to the Yankees, even if he wants a little time to sleep on it). “He’ll let us know where he’ll go, if anywhere. At that point, it’s up to us if we want to move forward and finalize a deal,” Epstein told Muskat. So, there may or may not be a specific deal on the table with the Yankees. All we know is that the Cubs expect to know from Soriano within the next couple of days where he’ll definitively accept a trade, and the Cubs can finalize things from there – with whichever team – if they are so inclined. It sounds almost like a formal pre-approval for a trade – maybe it’s something the Cubs want after being burned by the informal nature of their discussions with Ryan Dempster last year.

  • chris

    long time reader.. first comment.. dont think its a basic off day with the #s he has against Kennedy.. think there is more to the “offday” and just club spin put on this through Muskrat.

    • Jp3

      Yeah that’s why Brett mentioned that in the game thread preview, SSS alert applies though seeing its only in the teens of ABs.

      • Ivy Walls

        yeah, Soriano’s head probably not in the game, transparent as it is, McLeod and other scouts probably in Scranton or were in Trenton this afternoon or in Palm Beach or even Connecticut. Find the scouts and there you have the real speculation.

        • demz

          His head wasn’t in last nights game either.

    • J. Edwards

      Agreed. Seems well-timed for the sake of the trade and you can always say Sori needs to rest his 37-yr-old legs.

      Side note: I can see how Soriano to the Bronx could give the team a lift in multiple ways outside his (occasionally) hot bat. His influence would be welcome to a Yankee squad reeling with injuries and the biogenesis/A-Rod fallout. Not to mention the baseball poetry of Soriano returning to the team that traded him to the Rangers for A-Rod all those years ago…

      • Gcheezpuff

        Funny, his numbers are nearly as good as ARods since that trade, and although we all complain about Soriano’s salary, his contract value was half of ARods. I think the yanks regret that trade.

        • Drew7

          I don’t know about that –

          Since 2004:

          A-Rod: .292/.387/.538/.919 –49 WAR
          Sori: .268/.321/.502/.823 –28 WAR

          I think what the Yankees would regret is giving A-Rod that last deal, not trading for him.

  • Jp3

    Hopefully he won’t surprised/shocked/hurt if another trade rumor comes out tomorrow morning.

  • TWC

    So Sveum “scheduled” a day off for Soriano. I’m sure that’ll untwist all the tinfoil hats around here.

    • CubsFaninMS

      I wonder if Sveum is 100% sure Soriano is not starting tonight….

      Hrrr-hrrrr-hrrrr

    • Hansman1982

      If I were in Sveums shoes, I’d be having a hey-day with the trade deadline. Random benchings, random mid-game substitutions, hugs for everyone.

      • turn two

        That would be awesome random sixth inning pull your shortstop and tell everyone to give him a hug.

      • SirCub

        How great would it be if he pulled Shark after 3 innings tonight, and gave him a hug. Twitter would explode.

        • hansman1982

          You really wanna generate a stir. Pull Samardjiza and Castro at the same time to a dugout full of hugs.

          • SirCub

            Or call timeout in the middle of the game and have the whole team meet on the mound for a big group hug.

  • TulaneCubs

    So now that Soriano is as good as gone (hopefully for some pitching), the question becomes what happens with DeJesus and Schierholtz. I’m still thinking the Cubs will trade one of those 2 guys.

    Hard to believe that even if Alf left, we’re still looking at DeJesus, Schierholtz, Gregg, Russell, Valbuena, Barney, Navarro and Guerrier as guys that could be traded.

    Guessing that at least 3 of those guys (not including Alf) get dealt before the deadline too.

    • Diggs

      My guess is they’d be OK with keeping both DeJesus and Schierholtz, as they’re not blocking anyone in the minors and they both play in a fashion that the front office is looking for. But I could also see at least one of them being traded (more likely DeJesus).

    • Kenster

      My guess is Schierholtz, Soriano, Gregg, Villanueva and Ransom. With Valbuena and Dejesus on the cusp, but i dont think they’ll get traded, just some sort of hunch i got about it.

  • TheoHoyer

    What’s the point of this post?

    • Patrick W.

      What’s the point of your question?

      • Wester

        What’s the point of this thread again?

        • TWC

          My point is, here we are, it’s shabbas, the sabbath, which I’m allowed to break only if it’s a matter of life or death…

          • Crockett

            Say what you like about the tenets of national socialism…

            • Pat

              At least it’s an ethos. But Nihilists….

              • http://www.cwsnaturally.com Evolution

                You guys make me happy…

            • college_of_coaches

              I myself dabbled in pacifism once

              • Jp3

                Not in Nam of course.

                • The Dude

                  He’s got emotional problems…man.

          • Jp3

            I don’t f&$@!?! ROLL on Shabbas!!!!!

            • The Dude

              “Will you come off it Walter. Your not even f**king Jewish, man.”

              • farmerjon

                ^funny, I read your posts with that voice in my head ; )

                • Jp3

                  This voice? “Do you see what happens Larry? This is what happens Larry when you F…”

                  • cubchymyst

                    …Find a stranger in the Alps!!!

      • Jp3

        My Point is dude that’s the other Lebowski, the millionaire

        • davidalanu

          Shut the !@#$ up Donnie, you’re out of your element!!

          • http://www.cwsnaturally.com Evolution

            Trade deadline threads and commentary that devolve into Lebowskithons are the reason life continues to matter to me…

  • Mike

    Good on Sveum for letting Soriano get a day off to clear his head.

  • Josh t

    Yeah also ironically Soriano is historically has terrible #’s against Ian Kennedy…but I agree it be a nice mental day for soriano

    • Patrick W.

      Read again. 13 ABs, 3hr, 7rbi, 1.768 OPS

  • http://It'searly Mike F

    The point is Theo deserves tremendous credit. I said it last year and say it now, Soriano going was a high priority. While most Cub fans and obviously a few teams have been drinking the kool aid, creating the Soriano myth and then being able to move him is a huge accomplishment. Bigger by far than moving Garza for the package which we will see how it turns out. Moving his kind of sunk cost and getting anything is spectacular.

    I would caution all those drunk on the kool aid, don’t expect a high return, that isn’t coming. Hopefully the Cubs will get some relief on his salary and a marginal relief type. But make no mistake, while no one with the organization will ever admit it, this nothing more than ending a terrible signing and addition by subtraction. I sincerely believe this is a tremendous accomplishment.

    Oh and now that the heavy lifting is done, I agree they will be active and think they’ll move more of that list than that too.

    • Bigj2197

      i never understood why the yanks did not look at fonzie in the off season instead of Vernon Wells. now it looks like they will end up with both

    • Eternal Pessemist

      Not a myth. A. Soriano = guy that knocks in runs. B. Yankee need = guy that knocks in runs. Therefore A. = B. So Soriano = Yankee need.

  • CubsFaninMS

    Brett:

    I agree with a poster the other day saying that a time stamp on the updates would be awesome. Not to complain. Heck, the fact that everyone is in a frenzy (including myself) with the F5 key is a testament to how much faith we have that we can get up-to-the-minute Cubs info from BN. With or without a time stamp, keep up the good work!

  • johnny chess Aka 2much2say

    Soriano said “They’re preparing to win in 2015, and that’s too late for me.
    So, that clarify’s the timeline for Theo and Jed

    • Rebuilding

      Wait, what? Theo and Jed would be blasted for suggesting something like that here as a commenter

      • johnny chess Aka 2much2say

        Huh?

        • Rebuilding

          It’s become taboo or silly to some here to suggest that we’ll be doing the same thing next year and then starting to sign people in 2015 in anticipation of our big time prospects arriving after the Super 2 deadline that year. Hopefully we then make a rookie fueled run. It seems Soriano is saying that exact thing after meeting with Epstein and Hoyer

          • http://www.bleachernation.com Brett

            I don’t know that it’s taboo to suggest it – it’s plausible. I think that’s when they would risk seeing fan support fall off significantly (which has financial ramifications that have to be considered).

      • Drew7

        I mean this in the most sincere way, RB:

        Your posts are *much* more enjoyable to read when you aren’t complaining about being picked on for your opinions.

    • Dustin S

      Looking at where the big-name prospects are at in our system (mostly AA and below), a run next year would have to be a fluke. Realistically we’d have to hope the ones that pan out can start making it to Chicago in the 2015-16 timeframe. The FO has been pretty open too about trying to align the Wrigley renovation with the upswing of the rebuild. With it looking like some renovations will happen this offseason, but things like the Jumbotron and probably completing other parts of the plan will be in the offseason after next – that lines up with 2015 too. The tv deal money starts to come into play as well. And to boot, the free agent class this offseason isn’t real spectacular.

      So put it all together and 2014 is shaping up to be another repeat of 2012/2013. They’ll probably pickup some veteran buy low/flippable guys again, and hope to maybe start getting some more young players a little more experience next year. But 2015 will be when we should start to see at least a fighting wild card chance if all goes well. Taking a step back and looking at that timeframe is also why Shark’s situation is a tough call.

  • johnny chess Aka 2much2say

    Anyone who has an expiring contract thru 2014 will be dealt

  • Kramden

    Trading Soriano to the Yankees may make sense for so many reasons…. For the Yankees!

    But the Yankees have a very thin minor league system and they’d likely hold on to any prospect of value, let alone relinquish one or two for 37 year old Alfonso….

    So it may not make sense for so many reasons to the Cubs.

    • nkniacc13

      but they can give IFA money and if they give a lottery ticket or 2 for him

  • Jon

    Hey Brett – i’d like to do this but cant afford it. Happy to throw in if Bleacher Nation can martial the resources. Ad in the paper if sori gets traded? The fans beat him up but hes been a great cub.

    Mr Soriano – good luck to you in new york. You are a great player and a great cub. When you’re done with the big apple, come back. You’ll always have a home in chicago.

    -cubs fans

    Im not much of a writer, but something like that would be great.

  • Corey

    Garza with 2 innings of good baseball, yanks’ve got 2 hits off him. That’s it.

  • 5412

    Hi,

    If Soriano gets traded, then more the reason to keep DeJesus. Who fills the void of clubhouse leader with experience?

    While you can have lots of kids you need the guy like Kerry Wood was toward the end of his career. A lot of guys looked up to Soriano and his clubhouse presence was valued. As I look at the roster, the only other guy who would earn that respect would be DeJesus.

    Regards,
    5412

    • Pat

      Actually it would probably be Shark. He’s not all that young anymore, has been around the longest (if you count partial seasons) of the “core”, and is now the best starter.

      • Cubes

        I rather look up to DD he’s got a hot wife. Shark just has long hair.

        • CityCub

          Best comment I’ve ever seen

  • Boba Fett

    Theohoyer what’s the point of your existence in this world! Nothing!

  • Ralph

    Boba what’s da matter?

  • Die hard

    Soriano thinking legacy

  • Jp3

    Omg, here we go again. Why does it feel like a power struggle with Sory? So he has said the Yankees are on the list of teams he would except a trade to BUT let me know when the deal is actually going down and then I will give you an official yay or nay. Wtf is that all about?

    • baldtaxguy

      Hammer…vs. nail. Its about being the hammer.

    • 5412

      Hi,

      I don’t see it as a power struggle. Soriano probably wants to talk it over with his agent and his family. In days gone by it would have been a ploy to extort a couple million for making the move but he has so much money that would be stupid.

      Ask anyone who has ever taken a transfer and they will tell you that having the family feel like they were consulted and involved makes things a whole lot easier.

      Hoyer has the levarage here because if Soriano comes back an says no trade, Jed will announce it. If you think Marmol caught hell, the crap Soriano would get would be much worse.

      I like the way it is playing out because when he is traded he will sing the praises about what a classy organization the Cubs are which helps recruit free agents in the future.

      regards,
      5412

      • Jp3

        I’ve been transferred and while I think you’re right it’s nice to consult the family that’s a bit of nonsense in this situation. He’s gone for the majority of the year anyways and correct me if I’m wrong but he’s still going to be making $18million next year right? I hope he can feed his family on that salary wherever they live… If I told my wife and kid we are moving they’d be bummed out til they saw my fist paycheck of that huge amount. And actually sory has all the leverage, because the cards could come out hypothetically and say we will give you our prospects #1,2, and 3 and sory could just say “nah I don’t like St. Louis”. That’s leverage in my opinion. I almost ALLWAYS agree with you 5412, what the hell did I drink tonight?😀

      • Scotti

        Gotta say I don’t see any power struggle, either. A guy has 10-5 rights and he’s working with the team. It didn’t help that NY leaked the trade talks just as it didn’t help that ATL leaked the trade talks with Dempster (another 10-5 player) last year. Both guys could just flat out say “No” (they stay and Cubs get no prospects) but the Cubs got the guy who will be the Cubs Minor League Pitcher of the Year for 2013 in the Dempster deal and, well, we’ll see with Soriano.

        • hansman1982

          Ya, had the Yankees not leaked it, Soriano could have said no and Theo and Jed would have kept telling us about how important he is.

          • http://a-rodminorsavg.324hr/yr7 cub2014

            deshaies saying Lake shouldnt bunt in that
            situation BS he is batting 2nd in the order
            the cubs need more team players

            • hansman1982

              A player who has decent power like Lake should never ever never bunt.

              • waittilthisyear

                looked like (to me) that he was bunting for a hit, which worked out nicely the other day, with the benefit of getting dejesus over if he didn’t reach safely. not a huge fan of the play myself, but i get it

              • http://a-rodminorsavg.324hr/yr7 cub2014

                hansman IMO your wrong, move the guy over
                get the run. Cant argue with the results.

                • SirCub

                  Ha, yea but the next batter doubled. Meaning that Dejesus would’ve scored easily from second. And if Lake hadn’t given himself up, he might’ve reached base, too, and the Cubs could’ve been looking at a much bigger inning.

                  • Scotti

                    Had Lake gotten on base there’s no telling if Rizzo would have been pitched differently. He likely would have. Assuming he would have doubled with Lake on is a fallacy.

                    • SirCub

                      Fine. Here’s a simpler way of putting it. The Run Expectancy for having a runner on second with none out:

                      1.19

                      And the run expectancy for having a runner on third with one out:

                      0.99

                      The odds of scoring one run in the inning goes up. But the odds of scoring multiple runs goes down.

              • Jp3

                At least the hottest hitter in the lineup generally shouldn’t be bunting. SSS and everything, he’s the hottest hitter in the lineup and we took the bat out of his hands but whatever

            • BABIP

              Um, no thanks on the bunting…unless maybe every now and then for a hit if it is there…

              • SirCub

                Yea, and I’m only okay with bunting for hits as long as his OPS on bunt attempts is comparable to his overall OPS. Which means he needs to be successful close to 40% of the time.

                • Scotti

                  He’s fast–he should be able to bunt for a hit. He’s young–he shouldn’t quit trying or he’ll never get it down.

                  • SirCub

                    I don’t disagree with you. But bunting leads to, best case scenario, a single. Which means that the more ability a player has to do damage swinging the bat, the less apt they should be to square around for a bunt, no matter how fast they are.

                    Like I said, for an .800 OPS guy (like we hope Lake could be), the break even point for bunting being acceptable is 40% of his bunts going for hits. Which is pretty elite territory, I believe. Maybe he’s that good of a bunter, I’m not sure.

                    • Scotti

                      Couple issues with the 40%.

                      First, you completely discount any walks after a missed bunt attempt (just like you can walk after a swing and a miss you can walk after a missed bunt attempt). A bunt attempt doesn’t always complete the PA.

                      Second, when you bunt (for a hit) you draw the 3B and/or 1B in–thus increasing the odds of a base hit in non-bunting attempts ONLY if you are KNOWN as a guy who can, and DOES, bunt for a hit on a regular basis.

                    • Blublud

                      You are wrong. If nothing else, being able to bunt for a hit force the defense to bring in the corners and actually opens up you chance to hit the ball past the IF.

                      Its like a guy who can drive the lane in Basketball but is only an ok shooter. If you get a look, you shoot, even if the odds of you making it is small. It forces the defense to play that shot and now it easier to drive the lane. Strategically, it makes a whole lot of sense.

                    • MichiganGoat

                      Scott look at the fangraph article, bunting is rarely a good move.

                    • SirCub

                      Those are good points. There are other benefits to bunting (and just showing bunt), and so maybe an .800 OPS guy only needs to be successful on 35% of bunts to break even. I’m not sure.

                      Overall, I’d say it should be a situational thing. Leading off an inning, nobody on base, sure try to get on base. Runner on second, nobody out, that might be a decent scenario to try it, too. But as we speak, he’s hitting a gapper and driving in a runner from first base. So yea, I just think its important to note that when you have a guy with some pop, who can do things like that, they should be swinging the bat.

                    • SirCub

                      It’s fine to say that bunts help a guy to get some extra hits by drawing in the defense (not sure of teh exact effect of this), but I think you can only take it so far.

                      If an .800 OPS guy has 30% success rate on bunts (.600 OPS), I don’t think it’s worth the extra couple singles he gets a year by sneaking a groundball past a drawn in infielder. He should just keep swinging.

                    • Scotti

                      Goat, Bunting for a hit is a very important part of the game. If some cat on FanGraphs doesn’t think so, then he needs to create an argument so compelling that folks that read his article (who are persuaded) can then articulate the argument’s high points without just saying “Look at the FanGraphs article.”

                      Bunting for a sacrifice is a situational deal. Need a run? Just one? The sac bunt might be a good choice.

                      Bunting for a hit? That is, quite literally, just using the whole field.

                  • MichiganGoat

                    Bunting is not productive more often than not it results in an out and thereby reduces success. I believe fangraph did a great piece on why bunting is rarely a good idea.

                    • MichiganGoat
                    • Jp3

                      FACTS!?!? WE DON’T NEED NO STINKING FACTS!!!!

                    • Scotti

                      That entire article–the entire article–was regarding the SACRIFICE bunt.

                      The article then ends with “Bunting for a base hit, putting on a well-timed squeeze, beating an overshifted defense, having a pitcher move a runner into scoring position… there’s room for bunting in baseball.”

                      Lake, as I and others have stated here, was obviously bunting for a hit.

                    • MichiganGoat

                      Yes there is room for anything but bunts are more likely outs and when your batter is on a hot streak it just isn’t a risk worth taking- in this case it resulted in an out as it more often does.

                    • SirCub

                      While its entirely accurate to say that bunts go for outs more often than not, the same thing can be said of swinging away. The threshold for deciding to bunt should be based on whether you can be more successful than swinging the bat. Probably OPS isn’t the best indicator, because walks aren’t really a factor in swinging or in bunting. I’d say SLG%, but that undervalues singles relative to extra base hits. My gut says its somewhere around 35-40% for a hitter with power and good contact skills, but idk. I’m sure somebody somewhere has done research on it.

                  • Scotti

                    “FACTS!?!? WE DON’T NEED NO STINKING FACTS!!!!”

                    It would help if said facts were germane.

                  • Starlin Backer

                    Have you watched these games? This kid is one of the better hunters I’ve seen in awhile.

                    • Scotti

                      Yes, he’s an incredible hunter. He kills with his hands. He keeps his eyes closed and tracks by smell alone. He that good.

                • Scotti

                  “Its like a guy who can drive the lane in Basketball but is only an ok shooter. If you get a look, you shoot, even if the odds of you making it is small. It forces the defense to play that shot and now it easier to drive the lane. Strategically, it makes a whole lot of sense.”

                  Blu, that is spot on. Spot on.

              • Scotti

                He was clearly bunting for a hit. He just bunted it too hard or he would have been safe.

                • MichiganGoat

                  But risk an likelyhood of it resulting in an out is too great.

                  • MichiganGoat

                    I swear we’ve covered this in great deal before with Campana and others.

                    • Jp3

                      Campana was an excellent bunter and he never struck out. He also was very tall

                    • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

                      The only guy I saw enough of his bunting for hits that it seemed to work: Brett Butler. Ozzie Smith. Recently, haven’t seen that many that actually piled up hits.

                      Oh wait, here’s two awesome lists of people who bunt:
                      http://www.beyondtheboxscore.com/2012/12/10/3748738/best-bunter-all-time-career-bunt-hits-bases-empty-mlb

                    • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

                      On the first list, most of these guys quit playing in the mid 1980s.

                      Second list, I was right – Brett Butler. Juan Pierre, forgot about him.

                  • Scotti

                    This is simply not true. Bunting into the “zone” that Lake bunted into resulted in a .291 BA in 2011 and that is IN SACRIFICE SITUATIONS per Bill James. Bunting for a hit in that zone–per James–resulted in a .743 BA (.375 for all zones).

                    While Lake’s attempt technically fits the Jame’s category of a sac bunt, the 3B was playing back and not expecting a bunt–he was clearly trying for a base hit. Here’s what James has to say about bunting for a hit:

                    “We’ve pointed this out before: bunting for a hit in non-sacrifice situations has been an effective strategy for many players since we started tracking this in the early 1990s. The best bunters hit well over .500 when bunting for a hit.” >> Bill James

                    Lake needs to work hard on developing his ability to bunt for a hit. Period.

                    http://www.billjamesonline.com/bunting_for_a_hit/

                    • Blublud

                      I agree with this 100%. There is a reason why managers who get paid to make these decisions will allow it.

                    • SirCub

                      That’s really cool stuff, Scotti. And in the end, I agree with you, if Lake can develop his ability to bunt consistently into the high average zones, then it will be a huge weapon for him. From the three bunts I’ve seen him attempt so far, he seems to have a pretty good feel for it already, so I’m glad he’s working on it.

                      I’m simply interested in it from a game theory stand point, of how good of a bunter a player has to be, relative to how good of a hitter he is, for it to become beneficial for him to regularly attempt bunt hits.

                    • Scotti

                      Sir, I agree, and remember, the bunt ATTEMPT is like a swing. Sometimes it concludes the AB and sometimes it doesn’t. To be fair, it certainly concludes at a greater percentage than swinging does, but still, it is just part of an overall PA. (The reason that James shows bunt BA so high is that he is showing only the conclusions (bunt or out). Similar things happen (BA goes up) when you only show the conclusion on a swing (hit or out)).

                      IMO, even Rizzo (who is much slower than Vogelbach) should be taught to have the bunt as a part of his game. Successful bunts are about bunting not just speed.

                    • SirCub

                      Definitely something every hitter should have in their toolbag. Just a matter of how often they should pull it out. I always got a kick out Carlos Pena’s ability to just drop down a halfway decent bunt and trot to first when they had the extreme shift on.

                    • cubfandoug

                      B-b-but there’s entirely unrelated article that doesn’t prove otherwise!

                      Baaaa

                  • Jp3

                    Not to mention the list of all these great “bunters for base hits” are Left handed hitters. Pierre, ichiro, lofton, Butler ect ect are left handed hitters, they are closer to first coming out of the box, it makes sense for some of those guys to do it. Maybe Lake could drag bunt left handed?

                    • Blublud

                      Well Lake is hitting .667 while attemping a bunt and technically 1.000 sense that counted as a sacrifice. If he does that, he could bunt every time up and I wouldn’t care.

                    • Scotti

                      Teaching Lake to hit left-handed to drag bunt to the 3B would 1) take the surprise away and 2) take the ability to swing away…

                      For those unfamiliar, a drag bunt is always down the 3B line and a push bunt is always between the pitcher and 1B.

                      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V2c-HSYX4hU

                      Lake executed the drag bunt very well. He just hit it a tad too hard.

                    • SirCub

                      Yea, most of them are left-handed and light hitting. It’s pretty rare to see right-handed hitters with power attempting bunts at a high clip. Because it’s just not the optimal use of their skill set.

                    • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

                      Every smallish quick lefty, including myself, learn the idea to bunt for a base hit.

                      I remembered Butler alo . He wasn’t always the greatest base stealer – thrown out quite a bit – but his bunt technique was awesome on the drag.
                      Nearly 50% is really good. Butler hit .283/.363 at 40 years old in 401 PAs.

                    • Jp3

                      Yeah I was def joking about him learning to bunt left handed but it is one of the main reasons the Majority of the all time great bunters for hits are left handed batters…. They’re a step closer to the bag. IT’s SCIENCE-Ron Burgandy

                    • Scotti

                      From the link referencing the “all time great bunters” you get this:

                      “Even in (Mickey) Mantle’s best season, when he hit for an other-worldly 1.164 OPS and a 202 wRC+, he still managed to lay down 11 bunt-hits with the bases empty.”

                      Mantle hit, for his career, .541 (80/148) with the bases empty on BUNT attempts. That’s just smart baseball. His figurative “bunt OPS” (again, where you magically discount any walks) was 1.082 during those attempts. It brought the corners in. It helped alleviate any potential shifts/defensive “cheating.” It set up the rest of the inning. Just smart baseball. Even though he had MASSIVE POWER. Bunting was a very important part of his overall skill set.

                      Re. It’s always lefties… Fast little lefties are taught to bunt. Fast little righties are taught to bunt, too–left-handed! That’s baseball tradition. This little right-handed guy is fast? Turn him around or, in the least, teach him to switch hit. That’s what happened to Theriot (and many, many more) in the minors. It’s tradition.

                      So is right-handed catching. I caught right-handed in high school and college. However, I’m ambidextrous and would have been a better left-handed catcher. Baseball tradition can only handle so much so I caught right-handed (lefty mitts were expensive anyway).

                      All that to say, bunting is mostly about bunting. Good/decent speed guys need to learn because they have an advantage. Power guys without good wheels should bunt because it brings in the corners and stops the shift cold. Lefty power shift? Drop that puppy over where the damn 3B SHOULD be! Do that a couple of times and the shift disappears.

          • Jp3

            I see you guys point totally but if I’m in Soriano’s position I don’t want to seem like the high school girlfriend that doesn’t know when the relationship is over. It’s over baby, time to move on for everyone.

            • Scotti

              Sure, and a part of the Theo “talk” could have been “Well, Sori, I’m not sure how much playing time we’re going to be able to find what with Lake being up and DeJesus coming back… We’re rebuilding, Sori. Maybe you can be a platoon hitter for us.” I’m thinking he’s been incentivized to move.

              • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

                It helps that DH Travis Hafner is gone to FA. SO the sell is, “New York needs a full time DH. You can hit or field, more opportunities..”
                We are not going to win next year either – but New York will compete; they have to.

          • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

            Maybe that was the plan – The discussion was had to move him. Jed told them to leak it, early enough, to get the final deal going and done.

            If Soriano said no to New York, after it came out publicly, he’d be pissing off two towns – Chicago and New York.

            They learnt from last year… and, what did they have to lose by not trying? (Not a secret that we’ve moved every higher price FA or malcontent (Feldman, Garza, Marmol, Camp, Stewart) within a reasonable amount of time. Navarro next. Baker could have been if not for health.)

          • Scotti

            “Ya, had the Yankees not leaked it, Soriano could have said no and Theo and Jed would have kept telling us about how important he is.”

            Hans, there is nothing in said leak that prohibits Soriano from saying No. None whatsoever. It’s leaked. He can still say No. We DO know that the leak pissed Soriano off. That did NOT help things along.

            • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

              It shouldn’t have. He knows we’ve been looking to move him since..2010?

              He’s mad because IF he says no now, he’ll be seen as a stubborn 37 year old vet that should be happy to go to the Big Apple/maybe even a chance to win next year. It was leverage move. Use media to influence decisions.

              He says no, he’ll have half the Chicago fans mad. And plenty in NYC.

              • Scotti

                He has shown that he doesn’t have a problem saying No. He said No last year and Cub fans hated him IF they already hated him (and many do). No difference. He doesn’t care and he shouldn’t. He’s earned his 10-5 rights.

                “It shouldn’t have. He knows we’ve been looking to move him since..2010?”

                There’s a huge difference between listening to offers and the NYY leaking that a deal is “imminent.”

                “He’s mad because…”

                He’s mad because nothing is imminent until the 10-5 guy says it’s imminent.

  • Jp3

    BRETT NICE JOB WITH THE TIME STAMP! Thanks a lot it lets me know if I need to scroll down and look on my phone while in the workplace☺

    • spearman

      I agree!

    • CubsFaninMS

      Agreed! The F5 key will not get a rest, but at least the Page Down key will.

  • Dr. Leroy Quackenbush

    I like it as well. Since I am OCD and come to the site every 5 seconds, it is helpful to know if I should read the updates or just go to Die Hard’s most recent post.

    • Jp3

      Ha. That’s funny. Die hard’s comment with Darth Hater’s retort to it

  • Diamond Don

    I’d be happy with salary relief and International money for Sori. I will miss Sori’s standing at home plate admiring his hits that he thinks are gone that end up hitting off the wall. Get it done Theo and Jed!

  • nkniacc13

    be interesting as to how many teams are on the list and who has made contact with cubs regarding Sori. Wonder if the Cubs could actually get something useful in this trade or just a ? bullpen arm

  • X the Cubs fan

    LAKE

  • Kramden

    Think Vitters gave Olt a big welcoming hug today?

    • FirstBase2016

      I’d bet they’re already becoming *great* friends.

    • CubsFaninMS

      “Awwwww. Looks like little man can’t take the hint!”

  • Afinch

    Think of how weird it’ll be when Soriano is gone. There’ll be zero left in terms of connections to the 07′ and 08′ division winning teams. Those were fun teams to watch, especially in ’08. Not so much in the playoffs but that 08′ team was really good.

    Kind of sad in a way that just 5 years later, with Marmol and now Soriano soon to exit that there’s no one left from those teams…..

  • Kramden

    So is Garza that good or is the Yankee offense that bad?

    I’m sure Ranger fans are giddy about the trade right now.

    • CubsFaninMS

      “Hey Cashman, we can help you get a power bat against that new, shiny starting pitcher that’ll be pitching against you for the rest of the year.”

  • Oswego chris

    Is it me or is Deputy Dewey from the Scream movies leading off for D-Backs?

    • SirCub

      Absolutely.

  • hansman1982

    So what are the odds that we will be able to re-sign Soriano after 2014?

    • DarthHater

      100%

      • baldtaxguy

        Heh

  • CubsFaninMS

    This is oddly depressing to see Soriano and Garza leave. They’re the last bastions of the Hendry era, yes, but these guys have been the faces of our franchise for years. I don’t disagree with either trade (assuming we get a decent haul and/or salary relief for Soriano) but you hate to see them leave. I’m confident that Samardzija and Rizzo can fill the leadership vacuum once they leave. With Soriano gone, we’ll have officially went into full swing with the Epstein/Hoyer Era, a new chapter.

    • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

      Its not Old Yeller. I’d feel more if..well I stop being too emotionally tied up to athletes when I realize trades and FA just mean you get 4-5 years tops and that’s usually it. WE got 7 from Sory, so there is that.

      Dodgers swept Toronto…AZ is hit!

    • http://www.hookersorcake.com hookersocake

      My wife’s nickname for Sori is Showboat. ” Why don’t they just throw him four straight pitches in the dirt?”

      • http://deepcenterfield.blogspot.com Jason Powers

        Ha Ha.

        Well, he’s either gonna say No , and well get showboat for another year. Or: plenty of youngsters to test at the MLB.

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