ChiSox acquire MacDougal; Soriano far behind?

Updated: July 25, 2006, 12:04 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

The White Sox continue to have serious discussions with the Nationals about left fielder Alfonso Soriano, a source close to the situation told ESPN The Magazine's Tim Kurkjian.

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Washington Nationals

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2006 SEASON STATISTICS
GM HR RBI R OBP AVG
98 31 62 73 .361 .288

The White Sox are not planning on giving up pitcher Brandon McCarthy in the deal, but the source said there's a way to make the deal without McCarthy in it. ESPN.com's Jayson Stark reports that White Sox GM Kenny Williams was adamant that blue-chip third-base prospect Josh Fields -- another player the Nationals have targeted -- also isn't going anyplace. The Nationals are talking with three other teams about Soriano.

The White Sox also acquired pitcher Mike MacDougal from the Royals in exchange for minor-league pitchers Tyler Lumsden and Daniel Cortes on Monday.

Soriano joined Washington last offseason in a trade from Texas, and the Nationals shifted him from second base to left field. Soriano is batting .288 with 31 homers, 62 RBI and 25 steals.

The slugger, who is scheduled to become a free agent at the end of the season, said Sunday he wanted to remain in Washington but doubted he and the Nationals could agree to a contract extension before the deadline.

The five-time All-Star said he spoke with incoming Nationals president Stan Kasten on Thursday, but they didn't discuss contract details. Soriano added that he doesn't think his agent, Diego Bentz, has discussed numbers with the Nationals, either.

One potential stumbling block if the sides did agree on a new contract: Soriano said he wants a no-trade clause, something Kasten pointed out Sunday he refused to include in contracts he negotiated in recent years while an executive with the Atlanta Braves, the NBA's Hawks and the NHL's Thrashers.

The Royals' closer, MacDougal will likely will be the setup man for Bobby Jenks with the White Sox, who lead the race for the American League wild-card spot at 59-38.

MacDougal, 29, did not allow a run in four appearances for the Royals this season after being activated from the 60-day disabled list on July 13. He had missed the first 3½ months of the campaign with a right shoulder strain.

Last season, MacDougal pitched a career-high 70 1/3 innings and went 5-6 with a 3.33 ERA. He converted 15 consecutive save chances from May 19 to Aug. 20.

In 2003, MacDougal made the AL All-Star team as a rookie. He set a club record with 68 appearances that year and recorded 27 saves.

The Royals own the worst record in the AL at 34-64.

A 23-year-old left-hander, Lumsden was 9-4 with a 2.69 ERA in 20 starts for Double-A Birmingham of the Southern League, while Cortes, a 19-year-old left-hander, went 3-9 with a 4.10 ERA for Class A Kannapolis of the South Atlantic League.

Information from The Associated Press and SportsTicker was used in this report.

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