Print and Go Back ESPN.com: Baseball [Print without images]

Friday, January 18, 2008
Sosa won't return to Texas, seeks team that can offer more playing time

By Jayson Stark
ESPN.com

Sammy Sosa won't be back for another season in Texas.

Sammy Sosa

Sosa

Designated Hitter
Texas Rangers

Profile

2007 Season Stats
GM HR RBI R OBP AVG
114 21 92 53 .311 .252
Rangers GM Jon Daniels and Sosa's agent, Adam Katz, told ESPN.com on Friday night that Texas was interested in bringing Sosa back in a more limited role than last season. But Sosa has decided to look for a team that can offer him more playing time.

"Sammy is very grateful and thankful to Texas for giving him this opportunity and for being receptive to bringing him back this season," Katz said. "But Sammy still wants to play -- ideally in a situation where he could get 400 to 500 plate appearances. If the right situation presents itself, he's available."

Katz said his conversations with the Rangers focused almost exclusively on Sosa's prospective role with the club this season. The Rangers have acquired Josh Hamilton and Milton Bradley this winter and couldn't guarantee Sosa that he would come anywhere close to the 454 plate appearances he got last season.

"Our experience with Sammy was very positive last year, so we were open to at least explore different possibilities," Daniels told ESPN.com. "Sammy's looking for a role which doesn't make sense for where we're going at this point. I wish him the best."

Sosa's career had appeared all but over until the Rangers gave him a chance to revive it last season. Almost no one would have guessed that he would wind up leading the team's regulars in home runs (21) and slugging (.468) or that he would finish third in the American League -- behind only Alex Rodriguez and Magglio Ordonez -- in RBIs per plate appearance.

But the Rangers are retooling, and Sosa still believes he can play. So he's working out regularly, hitting every day and looking for "the right situation," Katz said. Several teams have kicked Sosa's tires this winter, but he has no concrete offers at this point, Katz said.

Jayson Stark is a senior writer for ESPN.com.