As soon as Curtis Granderson went down on Sunday, the rumor mill fired up and images of Alfonso Soriano started dancing in the heads of beat reporters. There are reasons that Soriano makes sense: The Cubs are willing to listen to offers, he would add some insurance in case another outfielder goes down later in the year, and he would bring right-handed power to the lineup.

Soriano has a career .277/.346/.517 line against left-handed pitching and his hit .276/.346/.522 off southpaws over the past three seasons (.260/.342/.489 in 2012). That would be a nice platoon option both in the outfield and at DH once the Grandyman comes back to choke a

UZR also pegs him as a good defensive left fielder (career 12.4 UZR/150) as well, so if the team parts ways with Granderson this winter, Soriano can fill the open outfield spot in 2014.

However, Soriano does have one huge negative: He’s due to make $18 million dollars a year in 2013 and 2014.

If the Yankees want to get under the luxury tax, that’s a huge chunk of change to take on, especially considering that Granderson will miss approximately 30 games, not 130 games. If Curtis was slated to miss most of the season, a trade like this would be a lot more tempting. That’s not the case, though. That is way too much money to eat, given the circumstances.

While the Cubs might be willing to pay a large percentage of the tab to dump Soriano, they aren’t stupid (no, that’s not a joke). Boy Wonder Theo Epstein knows that the Yankees are trying to get under $189 million next season, and he knows the Yankees don’t have any starting-caliber outfield depth. Epstein also doesn’t have a pressing need to ship Soriano out. That gives the Cubbies a lot of leverage here. If the Yankees want them to pick up a huge percentage of Soriano’s contract, they will need to make it worth their while.

Chicago probably wants someone that they can plug into their big league roster, or a decent prospect that can make an impact in the future. If it is possible to make this deal happen by offering someone like Adam Warren and a prospect in the lower levels of the system, it might be worth it. Warren doesn’t seem to fit into the Yankees plans, but might be able to start in Chicago this year. The other prospect, though, should not be one of the bigger names (like Tyler Austin, for example).

The question is whether this will be enough for the Cubs to pick up most of Soriano’s salary. They do want to ship Soriano, but they do not NEED to. If Warren and a lower prospect or two is enough to get Soriano and have the Cubs pay the tab, the Yankees should go for it. If the asking price is more than that, the Yankees should pass on the former Bomber.