The Chicago Cubs are sending star slugger Sammy Sosa to the Baltimore Orioles in an off-season Major League Baseball trade.
Reports say the seven-time National League All-Star is going to the American League Baltimore club in exchange for infielder Jerry Hairston and two minor league players. The deal still requires the approval of Baseball Commission Bud Selig, and will not be final until Sosa passes a routine medical exam and opts out of a no-trade clause in his current contract.
Sosa's impending departure from the Cubs comes after he struggled last season with a lackluster batting average of .253 with 35 home runs and 80 RBI's. The right-fielder further soured his relationship with the team and Cubs' fans when he left the ball park during Chicago's final game of the season, incurring a fine of $87,500 - one-day's pay of his $17 million annual salary.
Sosa was a mainstay of the Cubs for 12 years. The 36-year-old played a key role in the Chicago's strong post-season performance in 2003 that left them just one victory from going to the World Series.
The Dominican native is seventh on the all-time home run list with 574. He won the National League Most Valuable Player award in 1998 - the first of three years that Sosa hit at least 60 home runs.