SORIANO WILL HIT ANYWHERE
So it is written. Alfonso Soriano will be fine with wherever he bats in Lou’s lineup.
“I feel comfortable batting leadoff and any [place] in the lineup,” he said recently at the Cubs Convention. “It’s not about me, it’s about the team and what [manager Lou Piniella] wants to do this year because, I’m 33 now and they think I can’t run anymore.”
It should be noted that whether due to leg injuries or his reduced speed, Soriano has hit into 9 double plays in each of the last 2 years, and he has swiped only 38 bases. He stole 41 in 2006 with Washington before he came to the Cubs.
As for where he should hit in the lineup? He had all of 9 at-bats in the 2-hole last year before Lou scratched that idea. In 2005, Soriano spent the majority of the season batting 5th, but also hit first in a number of games. His numbers that year were better when he hit 5th than they were when he hit leadoff. Miracle of miracles, folks. It can be done.
I still like him 4th in between Bradley and Ramirez. That way he’s sandwiched between what should be the Cubs 2 best hitters. And moving Derrek Lee to 2nd helps him to stay out all the double plays. Last year they were calling him ‘DP Lee’. Hitting into 27 of them will get you than moniker.
Maybe Soriano steals more bases by batting 4th. Throwing fastballs to Ryan Theriot is a bit different than throwing them to Ramirez and Soto. With those 2 guys in the lineup behind him, Soriano might get more/better pitches to run on.
[tags]Alfonso Soriano, Chicago Cubs, Milton Bradley[/tags]