March 22, 2006
After realizing that he was in a no-win situation, and that dragging things out would only damage his reputation even further, Alfonso Soriano conceded and agreed to play left field on a regular basis for the Washington Nationals this season. After that, who knows? See washingtonpost.com. As details emerged about the trade through which the Nationals gave up Brad Wilkerson to the Rangers, it became clear that the whole misunderstanding originated with the refusal of the Rangers to let Nationals GM Jim Bowden talk to Soriano before they consummated the deal. Bowden took a high risk, and he certainly bears some of the blame for this unfortunate situation.
Bruce Orser concludes that Soriano didn't learn from the example of mega-bucks superstar Alex Rodriguez, who graciously moved to third base after he was traded from the Rangers to the Yankees, in deference to incumbent shortstop Derek Jeter. As David Pinto noted,
For the majority of us, a $10 million dollar salary means we're going to do pretty much anything the boss asks, as long as it's not illegal. Playing left field, with that in mind, seems to be a reasonable request.
There is a revised diagram on the Crosley Field page, but early versions (in a "dynamic diagram") are still pending.
UPDATE: Steven Poppe writes:
Notice how New Orleans' NFL and NBA teams played their home games this season in other cities (Saints in San Antonio, Hornets in Oklahoma City)? If New Orleans had a MLB franchise that played in the Superdome, I suspect Bud Selig would have the New Orleans Baseball Club play its entire 2006 home schedule in San Juan, Puerto Rico at Hiram Bithorn Stadium.
Very likely, but he would probably also beg for government disaster relief money to build a new stadium full of luxury suites for fat cats, while displaced local residents wait and wait. Or is that possibility too close to the truth not to be funny?