Chicago Cubs president Theo Epstein told reporters, including Doug Padilla of ESPNChicago.com, that while he’s willing to explore trade options involving outfielder Alfonso Soriano this winter, he’s not willing to unload him at the same bargain price they would have dealt him for last offseason:
"I think if teams pursue him in a trade we will consider it and see if it makes our future better and makes us a better organization going forward," Epstein said. "But he's got value to us because he helps us win games, he provides protection in the lineup, and he's a great example for our younger players to follow in the clubhouse."
Soriano turned in another productive season at the plate, hitting .262/.322/.499 with 33 doubles, 32 home runs and 108 RBI. On top of his impressive offensive production, he improved his defense and provided a positive influence in the clubhouse, according to Padilla.
Still, Soriano will turn 37 in January and doesn’t figure to fit into the plans of Chicago’s next winning team. The $36 million he’s owed over the next two seasons could make it hard for teams in general to view him as a fit.
While Soriano does own 10-and-5 rights, providing him with a full no-trade clause, he has said that he’s willing to consider approving a trade that would send him to a World Series contender.