Coghlan experienced but still finding his way

NL's 2009 Rookie of Year fuels thrilling comeback win with 4-for-4 day

Coghlan experienced but still finding his way

CHICAGO -- One element the Cubs want to add for 2015 is veteran players to complement the youngsters. At 29, Chris Coghlan may have more service time than the prospects but the Cubs outfielder is quick to point out he's still learning, too.

"I wouldn't consider myself a veteran," said Coghlan, who won National League Rookie of the Year honors in 2009 with the Marlins. "This is maybe my fifth or sixth season. Guys who play eight, 10, 12 years, those are veteran guys. I consider myself still trying to establish myself. There's things I can bring because of the things I've been able to see."

What Coghlan did Saturday was impressive as he went 4-for-4 with two home runs and three RBIs in the Cubs' 8-7 come-from-behind win over the Dodgers. It was his third career multi-homer game, and he tied career highs in hits and RBIs. Coghlan says he's a better player now than he was in '09 because of his experiences.

"When I was younger, I'd watch the highlights and care about a lot more things," he said. "Now I realize that's for the birds. It doesn't matter [if he's on the highlights]. The only thing that matters to me is preparing myself to help the team win each day."

He learned from players like Ross Gload and Wes Helms, but injuries limited his playing time with the Marlins. He's healthy, and the Cubs have benefitted.

"We have [seven] games left, and I just want to finish the year," Coghlan said. "I'm just really grateful I've been able to stay healthy and I've had an opportunity. I tell people all the time that they don't hand them out for free and you don't get them as a gift. I'm grateful to the Cubs and trying to run with it and finish strong."

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings, and you can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.