2/22 Soriano ready to test his knee

Alfonso Soriano says he hasn’t run full speed yet but expects to be 100 percent by Opening Day. The Cubs outfielder reported to Fitch Park Monday, a day before the first full squad workout, to unpack, say hello to old friend Rudy Jaramillo, and give an update on his knee. Soriano had arthroscopic surgery in September and rehabbed this offseason at the team’s academy in the Dominican Republic.

“I’m not running 100 percent,” Soriano said. “That’s why I said I don’t feel 100 percent because I’m not running 100 percent. I’m running 75, 80 percent and I don’t feel anything at all. But when I start running 100 percent, I’ll know how I feel.”

The Cubs medical staff advised Soriano to not run full tilt this winter to avoid any setbacks.

“We’ll see in one week when I test my knee running in the field,” Soriano said. “My knee will tell me how I feel.”

What will likely be the hardest part of Soriano’s rehab will be the mental part. He has to  trust that his leg is healthy.

“I say in my mind I’m 80 percent but that’s because I’m not doing anything like playing in the field,” he said. “When I test it, I hope my knee feels better than I think. I think it’s 85 percent. Maybe when I test it, it’s 100 percent.”

“He’s ready to go,” Cubs manager Lou Piniella said of the left fielder. “He says his knee hasn’t bothered him.”

– Carrie Muskat

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