PHOENIX -- The trade winds continue to blow around the Chicago Cubs' veteran players.
Although the major trade story centers on Alfonso Soriano and a possible return to the New York Yankees, other potential pieces for playoff-contending teams are on display for teams to consider.
Cubs right fielder Nate Schierholtz, who had been battling injuries recently, put himself in position to possibly be playing meaningful baseball in October with his performance Wednesday night. Schierholtz drove in what proved to be the winning run in the 12th inning of a 7-6 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks.
"For Nate, that was kind of back to the way he was before he got beat up a little bit," Cubs manager Dale Sveum said. "He had a huge game and he missed another home run to left."
Schierholtz had a career-high five RBIs, including a three-run home run and an RBI single to go along with the game-winning double.
According to scouting sources, the NL Central-contending Pittsburgh Pirates have been watching Schierholtz for more than a month. The Pirates have had Schierholtz and Chicago White Sox right fielder Alex Rios at the top of their wish list
, hoping to acquire more offense for the stretch run as they battle the St. Louis Cardinals for division supremacy.
"That's out of our control," said Schierholtz, responding to a question about possibly being traded. "It happens, but I love being a Cub. I hope to stay here, but you never know what will happen in the next week. All we can do is go out there and focus on trying to win games."
There were 10 scouts in attendance Wednesday, and they were watching numerous Cubs players who more than likely are available for trade.
"I think it is fair to say we have some players who can help other clubs," said Theo Epstein, Cubs president of baseball operations. "That would espec
ially be true for players who are not under contract control next season."
Schierholtz has hit home runs in back-to-back games for the first time since Aug. 14-15, 2011.