The Saga of Alfonso Soriano, and Kevin Towers’ Latest Blunder

I’ve never been a fan of Alfonso Soriano. At the beginning of his major league career he was unquestionably the worst defensive second baseman in the game, and in virtually any clutch situation, he could be counted on for a strikeout. His overall horrendous play in the field and at bat was one of the keys for the Angels defeating the yankees in the 2002 American League Division Series, on their way to their first World Championship. Later on, moving Soriano to the outfield and eventually to DH alleviated many of those defensive problems.

The yankees reacquired him during the 2013 season, and they joyfully wrote him checks on only a small portion of what was owed him on his outrageous $138 million contract,

the bulk of which was still being paid by the Cubs. This year, in the last year of that contract he has been a total washout, and New York has now given him the DFA, and are looking to get something for him before having to give him his release and eating the rest of the final year of that contract. For the season, Soriano has hit .221 with six home runs, while striking out 71 times in only 226 at bats.

Why am I writing this? Because if you
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look around the major leagues, you see close races in virtually every division, you see teams just a handful of games out of being in a close race such as the Royals and the Mariners, and you see several teams such as the Pirates and the Rays who had bad starts but who are making their way towards being in a race. And what would any of these teams need? A veteran power hitter who can come off the bench and maybe win a couple of games for them down the stretch, especially if they can get the guy in exchange for nothing or next to nothing, and even more especially if his old teams will be on the hook for 95% of his salary.

So, as little as I think of Soriano, I think more than one team will be after him, and that he will be picked up by a team in or hoping to be in a pennant race and the post-season,

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where he will, once again, be able to strike out in a key, clutch situation.

Speaking of the yankees, their deal today for Brandon McCarthy could be a good one for them. I've always liked McCarthy and while with Oakland earlier in his career showed a lot of signs that he could have become a solid middle-of-the-rotation starter. Injuries derailed
much of that, but at 31 and healthy, New York might have stolen some wins in the deal in which they gave up nothing more than a fringe talent in Vidal Nuno, who may well be about to make his last few major league starts, ever, for Arizona in the next few weeks.

And what is going on in Arizona? Kevin Towers, on his last legs as a major league GM, pulled off a good deal for this team a couple of days ago, acquiring a potential big time power hitter in Zack Borenstein in the deal with the Angels for Joe Thatcher, but today, he was taken to the cleaners by the yankees, giving away McCarthy for an empty cereal box.

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