When Alfonso Soriano is hitting up to par, his defensive liability can be over-looked.
But the problem, as you know, has been Soriano’s decline offensively the past few seasons. He’s seemingly mis-played more balls off the left field wall than he’s hit over it.
This season, however, Soriano is off to a hot start. He’s hit safely in his last five games, hit the ball to right field with consistency, gone deep on three occasions and delivered some timely RBIs. The offense again outweighs the errors.
We know good things happen when Soriano gets on one of his torrid streaks. And I believe he’s still capable of carrying the offense weeks at a time as he did in 2007 & ’08–even from the seven hole.
Yes, he’s 35, and yes, he’s far from the player the Cubs signed four years ago. But Soriano isn’t exactly chopped liver.
Since joining the Cubs, Soriano has averaged nearly 27 HR and 70 RBI each season. Is that worth $18M per-year? No, of course not. But it’s not all bad, either.
Last year was Soriano’s first avoiding the DL as a Cub. He responded by leading the club in doubles (40) and slugging percentage (.496), and finished second with 24 home runs, 79 RBI and 67 runs scored.
Let’s not kid ourselves…Soriano is past his prime. But with continued health, we may catch our last glimpse of the old Soriano–a guy who can help keep the Cubs relevant through September.