A lot of times, former players get lost with a new team and you don’t hear much about them. But one former Chicago Cubs outfielder made headlines earlier this week.
Chris Coghlan has had a very up and down career. It started with him winning the National League Rookie of the Year as a member of the Miami Marlins in 2009. Sadly, he never was able to regain that form until 2014, when he became a member of the Chicago Cubs.
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Signed as free agent in January 2014, Coghlan quickly reverted back to his Rookie of the Year form. He slashed .283/.352/.452, his best mark since his rookie season (when he slashed .321/.390/.460). He tied a career-high with nine homers and was a bright spot on a rebuilding Cubs team
His success continued in 2015, when he hit a career-high 16 home runs despite only hitting .250. His career-best 58 walks though led to a on-base percentage of nearly 100 points higher than his batting average.
Coghlan was solid in the field, committing just one error in his two plus seasons with the Cubs. He was also notorious for some great diving catches and banging into walls.
Overcrowded outfield situation
Unfortunately, Coghlan fell victim to an overcrowded outfield and was traded to the Oakland Athletics in February 2016. This trade ultimately lead to the Cubs’ surprise re-signing of Dexter Fowler. Coghlan struggled in Oakland, batting just .146 in 51 games. However, his Cubs career wasn’t over yet. He returned in June when the A’s traded him back for infielder Arismendy Alcantara.
While he didn’t hit for as much power, he did slash .252/.391/.388 as a Cub, drawing 22 walks to just 26 strikeouts. He made the postseason roster but had just 1 hit in 19 at-bats the entire postseason. He does have a World Series ring though, which he has yet to receive.
Coghlan has also been remembered for his shocking plays on the field. Cubs fans will remember this play in August when he tied the game against the Cardinals after being denied a time out:
Now a member of the Toronto Blue Jays, Coghlan’s struggles at the plate continue. He’s hitting just .167 in eight games so far but made big headlines when he did this, also against the Cardinals:
Quite impressive for a guy still struggling to find his footing in the big leagues. Coghlan definitely re-emerged as a valuable back up after his three years with the Cubs. He slashed .264/.351./.441 with 26 homers as a Cub.
That slash-line is higher than his career slash line, and exactly half of his 52 career homers came as a Cub. It’s still unknown when he will receive his World Series ring, but the Blue Jays do come to Wrigley in August. So that could be when they give him his ring.
Clearly, he likes to pull off heroics against the Cardinals and it’s good to see a former Cub making headlines. I wish the best of luck to Coghlan and would be love to see him back in a Cub uniform one day.