Cubs’ Alfonso Soriano: No truth to Yankees trade story
BY GORDON WITTENMYER firstname.lastname@example.org August 3, 2011 11:58PM
Updated: November 2, 2011 7:10PM
PITTSBURGH — Contrary to an SI.com report Wednesday, Alfonso Soriano never gave his consent to the Cubs to trade him to the New York Yankees, in part because he was never asked.
He said friends in New York told him they read and heard he might be headed back to his original big-league team by the trading deadline last Sunday, but Soriano said no one from the Cubs raised the subject with him.
Neither the Yankees nor any other team had interest in the 35-year-old left fielder, even with the Cubs willing to eat most of the remaining $60 million on his contract.
But the issue doesn’t appear to be going away soon, and Soriano doesn’t even seem sure whether he expects to be back next season.
‘‘It’s like 50-50,’’ he said. ‘‘I want to stay here. If they put a good team [on the field] with a good chance to win, I’d like to be here. But if they want to change everything, like to young players . . . it depends on them, not me.’’
Factors may include how second-year outfielder Tyler Colvin looks over the final two months of the season and the development of prospect Brett Jackson.
The Cubs ate about 80 percent of the $4.7 million left on Kosuke Fukudome’s contract last week when they traded him to Cleveland to create playing time for Colvin.
‘‘I’ll do whatever they want,’’ Soriano said, echoing recent comments that he’d be willing to waive his no-trade rights. ‘‘I’m open. I like it here, but always I’m open.’’
Colvin and manager Mike Quade were ejected in succession Wednesday by umpire Bob Davidson — each as he walked away and each clearly surprised — after Colvin’s display of displeasure over a called third strike.
Colvin, who threw back his head and let his arm fall in response to the call, said something to himself as he walked back to the dugout.
‘‘I was really upset with myself right there,’’ said Colvin, who turned back quickly upon realizing he’d been ejected for the first time in the big leagues. ‘‘I told Bob, ‘I didn’t say anything to you.’ That’s everything I said, right there.’’
Quade came to Colvin’s defense, finally turning back toward the dugout, only to be tossed himself — at which point he turned back around, raised his upturned palms and seemed to say, ‘‘What’d you do that for?’’
‘‘I was just protecting my player,’’ said Quade, who was ejected for the second time in five days and didn’t believe he said anything wrong. ‘‘Nothing that I really thought should have gotten me thrown out. Bob had a different view.’’
According to Elias Sports Bureau, Tuesday’s victory was only the second game in which the Cubs have ever hit six home runs in the first four innings (two by Soriano and one each by Ara mis Ramirez, Colvin, Marlon Byrd and Geovany Soto). The first time it happened was May 31, 1954, against the St. Louis Cardinals at Wrigley Field.