Oh my..

So much for having Soriano as an O next season. Alfonso Soriano has just signed a…get this…8 year 136 million dollar deal with the Chicago Cubs.

Yes, 8 years….AND a 136 million dollars. That’s the FIFTH largest contract ever in MLB history.

So much for any sanity on the free agent market this winter.

The signing of Soriano gives the Cubs a great trio of hitters in Derek Lee, Aramis Rameriez and Soriano. Michael Barrett is pretty dang good too. I know too many times last season the Cubs lost what seemed be a million one run games. With a healthy Derek Lee and the addition of Soriano, I think the Cubs will definately put up some runs.

The Cubs have Matt Murton in left, Jacque Jones in right, and a hole in the center with the departure of Juan Pierre (who I doubt returns). Are they going to have Soriano play center or might they consider playing him at second. With the prior of signing of Mark DeRosa, I doubt that. I’m thinking Soriano plays left and they sign Dave Roberts or Gary Matthews Jr. for center and trade Murton. If they chose to deal Murton, I hope that the Orioles are all over that. Murton’s a young player with plenty of potential.

Now if the Cubs can sign some pitchers to go with Carlos Zambrano and Rich Hill and hope and pray that Mark Prior and Kerry Wood can some how, some way stay healthy for a single season, I think the Cubs can make some noise next season.

Also of note, Justin Speier has signed a 4 year deal with the Los Angelos California Angels of Greater Anaheim USA. The Orioles did have a four year on the table, but alas…he opted to play for the Angels. I think we’re going to make most of our transactions on the trade market.

From Ken Rosenthal:

The Orioles and other clubs also have engaged the White Sox in talks about Garland. The White Sox have been seeking young pitching for one of their veteran starters.

From Buster Olney:

Hearing a lot of chatter about a possible Atlanta-Baltimore trade built around right-hander Tim Hudson, a free agent coveted by the Orioles a couple of years ago. You would have to assume that either Adam Loewen or Hayden Penn, two of the Orioles’ better young pitchers, would be involved in the discussions. If that’s the case, I’d keep Loewen rather than deal him for Hudson, considering the veteran’s increasing inconsistency — his WHIP has climbed in each of the past three seasons, from 1.075 in 2003 to last season’s 1.44 — but I would use Penn as a bargaining chip in a trade for Hudson.

I’d much prefer Garland to Hudson. That said, I think Hayden Penn’s days the franchise ace in waiting are over. Yeah, he stunk in his call up, but I’m not writing him off just yet. But I’m guessing that he’s traded in the next couple weeks for a veteran pitcher. I only hope that it’s for someone not of the Jaret Wright/Kris Benson mold.
 

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