Done deal: Alfonso Soriano to be in Yankees lineup tonight

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UPDATE: The trade haul for Chicago: minor league right-hander Corey Black. Black is the 25th ranked prospect in the Yankees organization. He has great velocity but zero command so he’s, to put it mildly, a project.

UPDATE:  Buster Olney reports that the Cubs will pay roughly $17.7 million of the approximately $24.5 million left on Alfonso Soriano’s contract. We’re still awaiting word on who is going back to Chicago, but the word is that the Cubs are deciding among several low-level minor league pitching prospects.

8:23 AM: Gentlemen, start your “and now comes the man New York never should have traded away for Alex Rodriguez” columns. You know you want to. Just don’t try to figure out how the 2009 World Series would’ve worked, OK?

For as much as we’ve slagged on Soriano over the years this is a good pickup for New York. They have zero power at the moment. That’s the one part of Soriano’s game which still plays.

More details of what we know about the trade so far can be read here.

Rakuten Golden Eagles sign Jabari Blash

Jabari Blash
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Former Angels outfielder Jabari Blash has signed a one-year deal with the Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles of Nippon Professional Baseball, the team announced Friday. Per the Japan Times, the deal is said to be worth around $1.06 million. Blash was released from his contract with the Angels at the end of November.

The 29-year-old outfielder has had a rough go of it in the majors, where he failed to duplicate the promising results he delivered in the minors. While he consistently batted above .250 with 20-30 home runs per season at the Double- and Triple-A level, he petered out in back-to-back gigs with the Padres and Angels and slumped toward a .103/.200/.128 finish across 45 PA for Anaheim in 2018.

The hope, of course, is that the environment in NPB will help him get a better handle on his issues at the plate — in a best case scenario, resulting in a full-scale transformation that could make him more marketable to MLB teams in the future. To that end, Blash expects to be utilized as a cleanup batter in the Eagles’ lineup and will focus on assisting the club as they make a run toward the Japan Series.