Charles LeClaire-US PRESSWIRE
The veteran outfielder is interested in a change of scenery, but only if the Cubs struggle like they did last year, and only if specific teams come calling.
Chicago Cubs outfielder Alfonso Soriano, who is entering the penultimate year of a contract that will pay him $36 million over the next two years, has expressed an interest in trying his hand with a different club, but only if certain parameters are met, reports Jesse Rogers of ESPN:
Alfonso Soriano says he wants to win with the Chicago Cubs, but if the team falls out of contention -- and the Cubs are expected to struggle again after 101 losses last season -- Soriano would be interested in being traded.
"I want to go somewhere where I'd feel comfortable," Soriano said Monday...
Soriano said there were "six or seven" teams in the "east or center" that he's given the Cubs as potential landing spots if he's moved.
Soriano iterated that his focus at the moment is to be a part of a winning team with the Cubs, but if that does not happen then both sides are prepared to move on. The club has reportedly discussed all the potential landing spots with Soriano and agent Pat Rooney, so if the time comes to deal the veteran hopefully the Cubs can avoid a repeat of last year.
The Cubs tried to send Soriano to the (eventual World Series champion) San Francisco Giants in August, but the outfielder invoked his no-trade clause, citing that the cold weather in the Bay Area would negatively affect his knees. Never mind the much colder winter/spring temperatures in Chicago, apparently.
More Cubs: The 2013 Cubs By The Numbers
Earlier this winter Chicago expressed a willingness to eat all but $10 million of the remaining $36 million left on Soriano's contract in exchange for the "right prospect." It's unclear whether that offer will still stand once the season is underway, but one would expect them to take on a considerable amount of the money.
Soriano, 37, had a nice rebound year for the Cubbies last season after a miserable 2011. The righty slugger hit .262/.322/.499 with 32 home runs in 151 games for Chicago in 2012, the most games he's played at Wrigley in any one season since joining the club in 2007.