Alfonso Soriano is officially a New York Yankee again.
The outfielder was shipped from the Chicago Cubs to the Big Apple on Friday in exchange for Class-A right-hander Corey Black.
"We've been trying to improve our offence to no avail throughout the season," Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said. "By far he is the best available bat."
The Cubs will pay approximately $17.7 million of Soriano's $24.5 million salary through the end of the 2014 season, according to ESPN.
New York wasted no time putting Soriano to use, inserting him into the lineup for Friday’s game against the Tampa Bay Rays.
Soriano had previously played for the Yankees from 1999-2003.
CLINIC GAVE PEDs TO TEENS?
The Florida clinic at the centre of Major League Baseball’s steroid scandal also supplied performance-enhancing drugs to high school students, according to ESPN.
Porter Fischer, a former Biogenesis of America employee, said he saw boys age 16 and 17 come into the clinic, sometimes with their fathers. He said they were given packages that included HGH and testosterone.
Clinic documents obtained by ESPN in February included the names of 10 Miami-area high school baseball players with dollar amounts listed next to their names.
Another former Biogenesis employee said the packages for teenage athletes often featured HGH and Sermorelin, a drug that stimulates growth hormone release in the body.
That same employee also said young athletes often were injected with HGH and other prescription drugs in the Biogenesis office.
MLB is investigating Biogenesis and its dealings with some of the league’s stard. Milwaukee Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun was the first big-name player to be punished. He was suspended without pay for the remainder of the season Monday.
- Sun wire services
RODGERS: BRAUN LIED TO ME
For Aaron Rodgers, Ryan Braun’s admission to using performance-enhancing drugs was personal.
The Green Bay Packers quarterback, who in the past had publicly defended his pal against allegations of steroid use, expressed disappointment in the Milwaukee Brewers outfielder.
“Well, I was shocked, I really was, just like I know many of you were,” Rodgers told reporters Friday. “I was backing up a friend, who looked at me in the eye on multiple occasions and repeatedly denied these allegations, said they weren’t true. It’s disappointing, not only for myself as a friend but for obviously Wisconsin sports fans, Brewer fans, Major League Baseball fans.
“It doesn't feel great being lied to like that, and I’m disappointed about the way it all went down. I trusted him, and that’s the thing that probably hurts the most.”
Rodgers once said he would bet his salary that Braun did not use steroids.
MLB GON' GETCHA
Disgraced former major-leaguer Pete Rose has some advice for players who may be caught up in the Biogenesis performance-enhancing drug scandal.
“Come clean as quickly as you possibly can,” Rose told USA Today. “I guess (Ryan) Braun thought he was going to get away with it when he got off the hook the first time. I wish I could go around to all the spring training camps and talk to the young players about what happened to me.
“If baseball wants to get you, they’ve got enough resources and enough investigators that they’ll find a way to get you.”
Rose received a lifetime ban from MLB in August 1989 after an investigation revealed he had been gambling on games while managing the Cincinnati Reds.
Rose, the league’s all-time leader in hits with 4,256, has filed for reinstatement multiple times to no avail.
Technically, Los Angeles Angels relief pitcher Dane De La Rosa doesn’t have a big-league save to his name.
Randy the bird, however, would surely argue that fact.
In the third inning of Thursday’s 8-3 road win against the Oakland A’s, De La Rosa saved a wounded bird that was laying near a baseline fence.
Captured live by NBC cameras, the 30-year-old pitcher gently scooped up the pigeon – which he would later name Randy – took a seat in the bullpen for a moment and then walked past a handful of puzzled teammates on his way to the clubhouse. De La Rosa then released the pigeon outside of the stadium
The act of kindness brought good karma to the right-hander.
De La Rosa took the mound in the eighth inning and performed well. He needed only 10 pitches to retire three straight A’s batters.
New York Yankees outfielder Curtis Granderson, out since May 24 with a broken pinkie finger, has begun rehab games and could return to the lineup in mid-August ... Pittsburgh Pirates closer Jason Grilli will be out of the lineup 4-8 weeks with a strained flexor tendon, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette ... Seattle Mariners catcher Mike Zunino suffered a broken bone in his wrist after taking a foul ball off the left hand Thursday and will miss six weeks, according to the Tacoma News Tribune.