Player of the Week: Fonzie's Back

Since returning to his old stomping grounds, Alfonso Soriano has rediscovered his stroke, and this past week, led the Yankees to a 5-2 record, including a series win over Boston.

The last time Alfonso Soriano played for the New York Yankees, the Bronx Bombers resided in a different stadium, were guided by a different manager and were coming off of two World Series championships.

On July 26, he returned to the Bronx to a team that hasn't won it all since 2008, was nearly out of the playoff chase and resided across the street from the now-demolished edifice at East 161st St. and River Ave.

While the scenery may have changed, Soriano's bat felt familiar enough in the City That Never Sleeps to wake with a start. And boy, what a start.

After a 1-for-16 skid, Soriano set off fire alarms all over the Empire State over the past seven days, leading the Majors in RBIs (18), home runs (5), hits (15), total bases (31) and runs (9).

The 37-year old former wunderkind led the Yankees to a 5-2 week, hitting a scorching .484 (15-for-31), good for fourth in the majors (and third in the American League) with a big-league best 1.000 slugging percentage and a 1.515 OPS.

The 13th-year left fielder has only played 21 games for New York, but has certainly made his mark, hitting .306 with eight homers and 26 RBIs, most of which came this past week.

Soriano started off the week inauspiciously enough, going 0-for-3 with a strikeout in the Yankees' series-opening 2-1 win over the Los Angeles Angels in the Bronx, but then, he caught fire. On Aug. 12, Soriano went 3-for-6 with three runs and two homers, driving in a then-career best six in a 14-7 win. The next night, he one-upped himself, going 3-for-3 with three runs, one double, two circuit shots and a new career-high seven RBIs, throwing in a walk for good measure in the 11-3 Yankees victory and becoming the third player in MLB history to collect at least six RBIs in back-to-back games – the first since Geoff Jenkins turned the trick for Milwaukee back in 2001.

The next night, Soriano once again paced the offense, going 4-for-5 with a run and just a paltry solitary RBI, as the Halos escaped a sweep with an 8-4 win.

While the Yankees now sit 7.5 games back of the American League East-leading Boston Red Sox, Soriano did his best to make sure that his old rivals remembered him, going 5-for-14 with two runs, one home run and four RBIs during a three-game series with the Sox, as New York took two of three from Boston.

Though Soriano went 0-for-6 with a strikeout in the series finale, his body of work over the past seven days is far-and-away the most impressive stretch of his career.

Previous POWs
Aug. 5-11: Miguel Cabrera
July 29-August 4: A.J. Burnett
July 22-28: Giancarlo Stanton
July 15-21: Juan Lagares
July 8-14: Buster Posey
July 1-7: Clayton Kershaw
June 24-30: Jason Kipnis
June 17-23: Ryan Howard
June 10-16: Carlos Gonzalez
June 3-9: Yasiel Puig
May 26-June 2: Domonic Brown
May 20-26: Mike Trout
May 13-19: Justin Masterson
May 6-12: Evan Longoria
April 29-May 5: Ryan Raburn
April 22-28: Jeff Locke
April 15-21: Mike Trout
April 8-14: Prince Fielder

Ryan Gorcey covers Major League Baseball and publishes for and FOX Sports NEXT. Follow him on twitter at @RGBearTerritory.

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