The bottom line for the Cubs is that they need 34-year old righty swinging LF Alfonso Soriano to give them 150 or more games in 2010. He played in only 117 games for the Cubs last season and he was 115 of 477 (.241 avg, .726 OPS) with 64 runs scored, 20 homers, 55 RBIs and 9 stolen bases. Soriano has only averaged 120.3 games played, 79 runs scored, 27.3 homers, 66.7 RBIs and 15.7 stolen bases per season in his three years with the Cubs. The good thing about Soriano’s numbers with the Cubs is that he would project out to scoring 99 runs, whacking 34 homers, knocking in 83 runs and stealing 20 bases if the played in 150 games based on his averages with the team. The Cubs would gladly take those kind of numbers out of Soriano in 2010. Soriano has to hit the ball well because he is not a good defensive left fielder. Soriano played in 116 games in LF last season for the Cubs and he made 11 errors while showing slightly below average range. He did have 7 assists last season as his arm is still strong but that is about his only asset defensively.
31-year old Xavier Nady will be Soriano’s top backup in LF in 2010. But, most of his time will be spent in RF probably platooning with Kosuke Fukudome.
29-year old lefty swinging Micah Hoffpauir will have a decent chance of making the Cubs this season as a backup OF/1B. He played in 105 games for the Cubs last season and he was 56 for 234 (.239 avg, .727 OPS) with 28 runs scored, 10 homers and 35 RBIs. Hoffpauir didn’t make any errors in 11 games in LF for the Cubs last season but he showed poor range there.
24-year old lefty swinging Tyler Colvin is a long shot to make the Cubs. He is a natural CF but he could play left if the Cubs need him to.
PROJECTED GRADE FOR THE LF IN 2010: B-