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Chris Coghlan signs minor-league deal with the Cubs

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That really was him in the sim game on Wednesday.

Yes, that really was Chris Coghlan I saw on Wednesday in Mesa!
Al Yellon

SCOTTSDALE, Arizona — When I went to see Tyler Chatwood throw in a simulated game with Cubs minor leaguers Wednesday, the last thing I expected to see was a major league free agent taking at-bats and working out with the team.

But it sure looked like former Cub Chris Coghlan playing in that game, and Thursday we received confirmation:

I would assume that eventually Coghlan will be assigned to Triple-A Iowa, where he’ll be in case there’s an injury to a Cubs outfielder. I’d further guess that he might have a date on which he can become a free agent if he’s not called up.

This is a good signing. Coghlan had the best three years of his nine-year career as a Cub, hitting .264/.351/.441 with 26 home runs in 928 at-bats. He’s versatile and can play both corner outfield positions and even second and third base in an emergency.

If Coghlan doesn’t return as a player — he’ll turn 33 in June — perhaps he’ll stay in the organization as a coach or special assistant.

And we will always have this play to remember:

Welcome back, Cogs.