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Thursday, July 21, 2011
Will Cubs take hit on Alfonso Soriano?

By Bruce Levine
ESPNChicago.com

The Chicago Cubs would be willing to absorb a high percentage of left fielder Alfonso Soriano's contract if the right trade offer came along, a source familiar with the situation told ESPNChicago.com.

Soriano has more than $60 million remaining on an eight-year, $136 million deal he signed in November 2006.

There is a full no-trade clause in his contract, but Soriano told ESPNChicago.com two months ago that if the Cubs approached him about a trade, he most likely would agree to one. He reaffirmed that recently to multiple outlets.

Major League Baseball's non-waiver trading deadline is July 31.

American League teams could consider Soriano as a possibility at designated hitter for the duration of his contract, which runs through 2014. He's hitting .249 with 14 home runs and 41 RBIs.

In related news, multiple sources said Aramis Ramirez recently met with Cubs management and the message conveyed by Ramirez's camp was that the third baseman wants to stay in Chicago and would not waive his no-trade clause. Ramirez told ESPNChicago.com on Wednesday that he would consider an extension beyond next season.

Also, teams have expressed interest in Cubs right fielder Kosuke Fukudome, who is on the Cleveland Indians' radar, according to a major league source. Teams also have shown interest in Cubs pitcher John Grabow and outfielder Marlon Byrd, sources said.

Bruce Levine covers baseball for ESPNChicago.com and ESPN 1000.