Originally posted on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 7/26/13
Alfonso Soriano’s days roaming the outfield at Wrigley Field are over. (Photo credit: David Banks/ Getty Images) The Alfonso Soriano era is over for the Chicago Cubs. The 37-year-old outfielder is headed back to the New York Yankees, the club he began his major league career with in 1999. The Cubs will reportedly receive minor league pitcher Corey Black from the Yankees. No other player represented the past seven seasons for the Cubs better than Soriano. The Cubs signed Soriano to an eight-year/$136 million contract before the 2007 season, a move that coincided with the hiring of manager Lou Piniella. The next two seasons would be some of the most eventful in the team’s history. In Soriano’s first two seasons, the Cubs made back-to-back postseason appearances in 2007 and 2008. The 97 wins the Cubs earned in the 2008 season were the most since the 1945 pennant-winning team that made the franchise’s most recent World Series appearance. Unfortunately, both of these playoff berths ended with sweeps in the NLDS at the hands of the Diamondbacks and Dodgers. Despite the lack of postseason success, Soriano should be regarded as one of the greatest Cubs of his generation. His legacy as a Cub is by no means legendary like the careers of Ernie Banks, Ron Santo, or Ryne Sandberg but Soriano provided the Cubs with a consistently powerful bat. Soriano hit 181 homers as a Cub to place 11th on the team’s all-time home run list. Soriano’s batting average sunk well below .300 in the past five seasons. With an average of .264 with Chicago, he never was the kind of player to hit for average. But his slugging percentage of .495 over his six-and-half seasons as a Cub puts him ninth among the Cubs all-time slugging leaders, ahead of even Santo and Sandberg. The main reason for why Soriano garnered so many boos and mixed reactions from the Wrigley faithful over the years had to do with his defensive play. Soriano broke into the majors at second base but was moved to the outfield in 2006 with the Nationals and remained there for his tenure with the Cubs. Not a natural at the position, Soriano would make Cubs fans cringe every time he hopped before making a catch in left field. Yet, his fielding did improve, going from 11 errors committed in 2009 to only one last season. Soriano’s departure means Jeff Samardzija is the only player left on the Cubs roster from the 2008 division championship team. There are no players remaining from the 2007 playoff team. One of the last remnants of those great teams has left Chicago. The memories of those two memorable seasons now seem even further away as the organization goes through another rebuilding phase. The post-Tribune era has officially begun, as this team will now be made-up almost entirely of players acquired under the ownership of the Ricketts family, who bought the Cubs in 2009. Cubs fans may have mixed feelings over his time in Chicago; that he underachieved considering the size of his contract. But his work effort was never lacking and his contributions to two division champions should not be overlooked.

This article first appeared on isportsweb.com and was syndicated with permission.

PLAYERS: Alfonso Soriano
TEAMS: Chicago Cubs

Report: Irving found out Cavs talked trading him in ‘sloppy’ meeting

Heat to honor memory of Stoneman Douglas victims with jersey patch

Report: ‘Tsunami’ of trades could occur in NFL offseason

Paul Heyman says Brock Lesnar could still return to UFC

Cashman: Yankees still ‘not on equal footing’ with Red Sox


Report: Jets not willing to let Kirk Cousins name his price

2018 Winter Olympics finally reaches 1 million in attendance

Rick Carlisle addresses Mavs' sexual harassment scandal

Lamoureux wins gold medal with beautiful shootout goal

Derek Jeter: Marlins will ‘do their part’ to help Florida heal after mass shooting

Lindsey Vonn unable to pull off miracle in slalom, does not medal in combined

The 'Kawhi so serious?' quiz

No one wants to jump with Dennis Smith Jr.

Top MLB Cy Young candidates heading into 2018

Negro Leaguers every baseball fan should know

MLB's top 10 first basemen for 2018

Faltering Blackhawks face tough decisions at deadline

NBA's entertaining tournament proposal wouldn't fix tanking

One weakness each contender must fix before NBA Playoffs

Ten breakout stars of the 2018 Winter Olympics

The greatest barrier-breaking African-American moments in MLB history

25 best MLB players under 25

A.J. McCarron might be the best consolation prize in free agency

Cubs News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Yardbarker Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

No one wants to jump with Dennis Smith Jr.

The 'Kawhi so serious?' quiz

Top MLB Cy Young candidates heading into 2018

25 best MLB players under 25

The 'Red Sox finally get their guy' quiz

MLB's top 10 first basemen for 2018

Faltering Blackhawks face tough decisions at deadline

Offseason needs for every NFL team

MLB's top 10 second basemen for 2018

The 'All muscle hamsters go to heaven' quiz

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker