“This is a good number that I carried for 14 years (actually 13) in Chicago, and I represented that number, so that number should have been retired a long time ago.”
During the Cubs Convention on Saturday, owner Tom Ricketts indicated he might be open to reaching out to Sosa and repairing the relationship with the former slugger, who hit 609 home runs in 18 major league seasons.
“When we got here there wasn’t much communication, and we really haven’t focused on it,” said Ricketts, whose family bought the Cubs in 2009, five years after Sosa’s last season with the team. “Maybe it’s an issue we pick up this year.”
The Cubs and Sosa had an ugly split after a 13-year run that included a team-record 545 home runs and three seasons of 60-plus homers. He was caught with a corked bat in 2003, reportedly left Wrigley Field early during the last game of the 2004 season, and a New York Times story reported Sosa was on the 2003 list of players that flunked a test for performance-enhancing drugs.
Sosa received only 12 percent of the vote for the Hall of Fame this year, his first on the ballot. For the first time since 1996, no players were elected to the Hall of Fame by the Baseball Writers’ Association of America, which kept out steroid-tainted stars such as Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Mark McGwire and Sosa.