Alfonso Soriano has been nothing short of spectacular for the New York Yankees once he was acquired from the Chicago Cubs. He has helped bolster a lineup that was struggling all season, and added much-needed right-handed power that the Yanks haven’t had before he was added.
Since Soriano was acquired, the Yankees are only 16-14, but that has nothing to do with his bat. The Yanks have averaged just fewer than 4.5 runs per game since his arrival, as opposed to a mere 3.89 before the acquisition.
Soriano has four doubles, 12 home runs and 35 RBIs since the All-Star break. Miguel Cabrera, who is widely thought to be the best hitter in the game and the hottest hitter on the planet, has five doubles, 13 homers and 35 RBIs in the same amount of time. Soriano has already tied the lead for Yankees right-handed batters in homers with 11 in only 30 games played (Vernon Wells also has 11 homers).
That might say a lot about how the Yanks’ righties have slugged so far, but it also says how much of a great pickup Soriano has been.
In a more historical perspective of what Soriano has done in his career, he is the seventh person to hit his 400th homer in pinstripes, putting him in the same category as some of the best baseball players in history. He is also just the sixth player in MLB history with 400-plus homers, 2,000-plus hits, and 250-plus stolen bases.
Soriano doesn’t just bring production to the clubhouse. He also adds depth to the lineup and protects Robinson Cano from being pitched around. The fact that he’s a right-handed bat in the middle of the lineup makes it a lot tougher for opposing teams to manage in the later innings of games.
It’s also worth noting that he has played a very solid left field, showing range that I thought had left him years ago, as well the ability to swipe bags at critical times. The Soriano pickup has turned out better than anyone thought it could have. A questionable move has become a heck of a steal.