Many on Twitter and on our Facebook page pointed out that the release of Nate Schierholtz left the Phillies with few outfield options: John Mayberry, Domonic Brown, Darin Ruf, and Laynce Nix. I think it is clear that the Phillies will add one or two outfielders. The Phillies are linked to outfielder Angel Pagan, who does not really provide much power. If Pagan is the target, the Phillies would need one more bat who has a little bit of power.
One emerging available name that could provide the Phillies some power is Cubs outfielder Alfonso Soriano, entering the final year of his eight year, $136 million contract. According to Jon Paul Morosi of FoxSports.com, Soriano will be available this week at the Winter Meetings. One name Morosi names in particular is the Phillies:
The Philadelphia Phillies are one obvious fit for Soriano. They are looking for a right-handed outfield bat to replace Hunter Pence, who was dealt to the San Francisco Giants at the July trade deadline. With Pence gone and catcher Carlos Ruiz suspended to begin the season, the Phillies have only one player on their active roster — shortstop Jimmy Rollins — who hit more than 15 home runs in 2012, when Ryan Howard and Chase Utley missed time with injuries.
The Phillies pursued Soriano way back before the 2007 season. Check out this "Finger Food" blog from John Finger back in 2006 detailing the Philies' pursuit.
The Cubs are willing to pick up some money, Morosi says. Soriano is due $18 million each of the next two years. If the money is right, he could prove to be a lesser risk than signing someone like Josh Hamilton to a long deal, or a lesser player such as Cody Ross to more than he deserves at a high price.
One potential obstacle would be Soriano's full no-trade clause. Soriano could decide that he wishes to remain in Chicago. If he does, his chances of a championship will be small while President Theo Epstein and General Manager Jed Hoyer rebuild the Cubs.
Soriano hit .262 with 32 home runs and 108 RBI in 2012. He finished tied for fifth in the league in home runs and third in RBI.