- Doug Padilla, ESPN Staff Writer
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Soriano admitted that if he feels physically like he does now after the final season of his contract in 2014 he will be more than ready to retire. Before that day comes, though, he could see himself playing elsewhere, especially with the Cubs' roster upheaval that is expected to continue.
"It depends on how long and if they want to rebuild for next year then I'll be here," Soriano said. "But if they want to take longer than two years, they have to think about moving (me) out to another team to win quickly. I said two more years on the contract and maybe I will retire after that so I want one more shot to go to the World Series before I retire."
Despite a slow start, Soriano was one of the top run producers in baseball this season, hitting 32 home runs and driving in 108 runs despite playing on a sore knee. This was the sixth season of his whopping eight-year, $136 million deal signed before the 2007 season.
When he struggled to live up to the deal, Soriano faced heavy criticism, but he has managed to quiet some of that noise this season. The productive year might make a team willing to pick up some of the money that remains on Soriano's deal, but the Cubs are still expected to eat some of the cash he is owed if a trade goes down.
Either way, the 36-year-old veteran is prepared to hear his name being brought up in trade rumors this winter.
"I have a lot of time to think about it," said Soriano, who has set a solid example in the clubhouse with his work ethic and has been a mentor to Starlin Castro. "I'm ready to see my name in a lot of rumors, but we'll see what they want and what they can do. I hope that we can be on the same page and see what happens."
Cubs manager Dale Sveum was asked if he would like to see Soriano stay.
"Yeah, no question about it," Sveum said. "To have 32 home runs, 108 RBIs and to play left field like he has with his speed and with the legs he has, he's done a great job in the outfield. Everything he does in that clubhouse, his work ethic, is unmatched. I haven't seen too many people in my career that goes about their business on a daily basis like Sori does. To produce, as the manager, that's even better."
As for his talk about retiring in two years, Soriano can definitely see that happening.
"I just say that the way that I feel now (physically), I wish it can be my number eight year in my contract so I can retire today but there is two more years left," he said.