PHOENIX — The Chicago Cubs have pulled Alfonso Soriano from the lineup and manager Dale Sveum says a trade to send the outfielder to the New York Yankees is about “99 percent done.”
Soriano was replaced in left field by Cole Gillespie for Thursday night’s game at Arizona.
Soriano is hitting .254 with 17 home runs and 51 RBIs.
He is a seven-time All-Star and made his major league debut with the Yankees in 1999.
“If we are able to add him, it’s definitely a great thing,” said Yankees outfielder Curtis Granderson who is rehabbing in Tampa, Fla.
“Plus, he’s played there before. That’s one thing that is a difficult thing to adjust to. You’ve got to come to New York and can you handle it, can you not.
“Obviously he had in the past, so if it is 100 percent it will definitely be a good thing for us. He has flexibility to move around wherever we would need to have him. If it is, it will be exciting.”
The Yankees and Cubs would need to work out the financial aspects of Soriano’s rich contract. New York is fourth in the AL East, trailing leader Boston by 6½ games, and desperate for power.
“He’s been there before, and he’s performed in that atmosphere,” Sveum said.