MRI reveals inflammation for Soriano
Cubs slugger likely to receive cortisone shot in left knee
CHICAGO -- An MRI of Alfonso Soriano's left knee on Saturday revealed inflammation, and the outfielder will likely get a cortisone shot and be sidelined a few days.
Soriano's knee has been bothering him for the last four months. The Cubs outfielder had said he wanted to have the knee examined on Sept. 10, and the test was then moved up to Monday. But the Cubs decided Saturday not to delay the exam in hopes of trying to find the reason for the pain affecting the 33-year-old outfielder.
Jake Fox, Soriano's sub on Saturday, drove in a career-high five runs, including four on his first career grand slam, as the Cubs romped, 11-4, over the New York Mets.
Cubs manager Lou Piniella said the team orthopedic specialist will look at Soriano on Sunday, and he most likely will get a cortisone shot to alleviate the pain.
The knee bothers Soriano when he runs, not when he hits, but he was batting .167 with six RBIs in his last 15 games.
Soriano missed the Cubs' series finale against the Dodgers on Aug. 23 and their series opener against the Nationals on Tuesday, but he returned on Wednesday and hit a decisive homer in Chicago's 5-2 win over the Mets on Friday.
Even with the home run, which he hit off Brian Stokes, Soriano wasn't able to conceal a limp while trotting around the bases.
"There's no sense delaying it," manager Lou Piniella said. "We'll have him do it today, and once we get the results, then we know exactly what to do."
Soriano said he wanted to have the test done for peace of mind.
"It's something that needed to be done, so the quicker the better," Piniella said. "He's not moving well. Give him all the credit in the world -- he goes out there and does the best he can."
If it helps alleviate the pain, Soriano may consider undergoing a cortisone shot in the knee.
"It goes to show you he wants to play," Piniella said. "That's the first thing it shows you. Over the 17, 18 years I played in the big leagues, I had my share and more of cortisone shots in my shoulder to play.
"You have professional people administering these shots. If they can alleviate some discomfort and get you through the season without it being risky, I don't see any problem with it."
Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.