Hoyer Talks Alfonso Soriano, Matt Garza

Cubs GM Jed Hoyer appeared on "The Carmen, Jurko & Harry Show" on ESPN 1000 today to discuss a number of topics, and ESPN Chicago provided a transcript of the hot stove related items. Unsurprisingly, Hoyer acknowledged that the team is unlikely to trade Alfonso Soriano before the season…

"I think that's unlikely [that Soriano will start the season with another team]," said the GM. "We don't want to do anything to hurt our pitchers (with his defense), but we do believe there's something left in Sori."

As many as eight clubs inquired about Soriano earlier this offseason (including the Orioles), and chairman Tom Ricketts has made it clear that they're willing to eat most of $54MM left on his contract to facilitate a trade. The 36-year-old outfielder hit .244/.289/.469 with 26 homers last season. 

Hoyer also spoke briefly about Matt Garza, specifically the team's interest in keeping him around beyond his final two years of team control…

"It was a long (arbitration) process, but we talked to Matt a number of times since and we're happy we didn't have to go into a hearing room with him," Hoyer said. "He's a great pitcher and a guy we're going to talk to him about being part of our future, for sure. We need more guys like Matt, not less, and if we can work something out we'll certainly have those discussions."

The Cubs and Garza avoided arbitration with a one-year deal worth $9.5MM last week, though he's been a popular name on the trade rumor circuit this winter. He won't become a free agent until after the 2013 season, and the Cubbies can certainly afford to keep him around long-term. There's no urgency to trade him or extend him right at this moment, though.

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