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Alfonso Soriano contemplates offseason knee surgery

A.J. Pierzynski's double gets over head Cubs left fielder Alfonso Soriano eighth inning Chicago White Sox 7-4 wover Chicago Cubs

A.J. Pierzynski's double gets over the head of Cubs left fielder Alfonso Soriano in the eighth inning of the Chicago White Sox 7-4 win over the Chicago Cubs Saturday May 19, 2012 at Wrigley Field. | TOM CRUZE~Sun-Times

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Updated: July 1, 2012 12:35PM



Cubs left fielder Alfonso Soriano still has enough pain every day that he might wind up with a second surgery on his left knee depending on what it feels like the rest of the season, he said Saturday.

But Soriano, 36, refuses to sit, refuses to complain and refuses to let it alter the way he goes after balls during a season in which he’s experiencing a defensive rebirth.

Kerry Wood singled out Soriano for that toughness as he looked back on the trials and travails of his own career.

‘‘I’ve got respect for guys that have played this game for a long time because it’s not easy to do,’’ Wood said. ‘‘I have tremendous respect for what Soriano’s doing out there in left field for us this year and the way he has worked and what he has put in knowing what his body has gone through.’’

As Soriano said last week in St. Louis, ‘‘I joke with my teammates that I’m a warrior.’’

The fact is the knee he had surgically repaired in September 2009 because of a meniscus tear hasn’t been right much of this season. It has contributed to issues that already have him on a regular trainer’s-room schedule for maintenance therapy for his quads, hamstrings and calves.

‘‘[Wood] knows,’’ Soriano said, ‘‘because he sees me in the training room getting treatments like he does. But I don’t want to say nothing because I want to play. I know my knee is not 100 percent, but I want to keep playing.’’

Inflammation has not been a regular issue, according to insiders, and the idea of surgery isn’t even on the medical staff’s radar.

‘‘He’s the biggest surprise for me coming from the other side of the fence,’’ Cubs manager Dale Sveum said, ‘‘as far as the work ethic and the way he goes about his business and how much he wants to play every single day with the pain that he has to go through with his knee.’’

But Soriano, who won’t blame the pain for going without a home run until getting three in the last five games, got a few days off recently to rest and said surgery has crossed his mind.

‘‘Maybe after the season,’’ he said. ‘‘See how far I can go and after the season check it again, see what they can find in the knee. It’s not fun being in pain.’’



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