Lou says Alfonso Soriano will get a second opinion on his ailing left knee and that his return to the Cubs is not likely this season.
“He’s going to go see his own doctor to get a second opinion on this thing,” Lou told us in the dugout this morning. “We’ll probably know something in the next few days. I would categorize it as doubtful that he’d return. Doubtful. I would think that if he as the procedure done before the end of the year it would be just to clean it out a little bit.”
The "procedure" is arthroscopic surgery, which Soriano will have sooner or later.
If you haven’t already, check out today’s column on Baker, Bradley and the bullpen:
With Theriot’s OBP down at .337, a full 50 percentage points below last year, the Cubs might as well go with Fukudome-Bradley as their 1-2 hitters, just to see what they’ve got. Lou says he likes Fukudome near the top of the order but not necessarily as his leadoff man next year.
“It depends on what the club does over the winter,” Lou said. “We’ll see. I like him at the top part of our lineup. I don’t know about specifically the leadoff spot. The way we’re put together here, he and Theriot basically are our best options. Depending on what happens over the winter, we would stay that way. But if we got somebody who could really steal bases, that was capable of stealing 30-40 bases, then that would change, obviously.”
Asked if Soriano would ever return to leadoff, Lou said no.
“No, that’s over with,” he said. “That’s over with. No, we’re not going to do that.”
You have to wonder what the theme of this year’s off-season will be. The Cubs wanted to get “more left-handed” last year. If this year’s theme is to get faster, they better make sure whoever that fast guy is can get on base. And playing at Wrigley Field, the Cubs better be able to slug because their opponents won't stop hitting home runs. Getting on base and slugging the ball are the two most important characteristics an offense can have. Speed is nice, but it’s a secondary need.
In the minors, Peoria is done. The Chiefs went out two straight in the Class A Midwest League playoffs last night, losing 9-8 to Cedar Rapids. Right fielder Kyler Burke, a candidate for Cubs minor-league player of the year reached base three times, going 2-for-4 with a walk. DJ LeMahieu, this year’s second-round pick, was on base three times, going 2-for-4 with a walk, 2 runs and 2 RBI. Catcher Michael Brenly was 2-for-4.
Class AA Tennessee and manager Ryne Sandberg fell 4-2 at Huntsville in Game 1 of the best-of-five Southern League playoffs. Shortstop Starlin Castro, another player of the year candidate, was 1-for-4 with a run. Right fielder Tyler Colvin was 1-for-3 with a homer.