Yankee fans have never been known for their patience, and neither has Alfonso Soriano. 'Lil Sori has heard the boo birds at the Stadium over the last week as he waves meekly at breaking ball after breaking ball. Bill Madden suggests today that the Yanks should consider moving their dynamic young second baseman:
Going into last night's Game 2 of the World Series, Soriano was hitting .222 with 18 strikeouts in 54 at-bats (or one in every three). "If the Yankees are smart, they'll look to deal Soriano now while his value is still high and before he starts to make big money," one NL scout observed last night.
The Yankee high command has had internal discussions about whether to pursue trade talks with the Royals about center fielder Carlos Beltran.
The Royals have conceded they're going to have to move Beltran, who is a free agent after next season, and Soriano, who likely will get a bump from $800,000 to over $2 million in arbitration, would still be a cheap alternative whom they could control for three years.
One big problem, however: Beltran's agent is Scott Boras, whose clients (other than Bernie Williams) the Yankees have steadfastly avoided because of an acrimonious relationship that goes all the way back to Brien Taylor, the ill-fated 1991 No. 1 draft pick.
I don't think the idea of moving Soriano is a poor one. He is an exciting but streaky offensive player, and a poor defensive one. Maybe he would fare better in the outfield than he has at second base, and maybe he wouldn't. I certainly buy into the theory of moving a player too early rather than too late. Regardless of how he's struggled in the post season, Soriano is still young and has a lot of pop in his bat. The idea of Beltran landing in New York seems remote, but it sure would solve some long-term problems.