Cubs deal Coghlan to A's for righty Brooks

Hurler has pitched in big leagues each of the past 2 seasons

February 25th, 2016

MESA, Ariz. -- The Cubs dealt outfielder Chris Coghlan to the Athletics for right-hander Aaron Brooks on Thursday, to make room for Dexter Fowler and also to add another starting pitcher.

Coghlan, 30, was projected as the fourth outfielder after batting .250 with 25 doubles, 16 homers and 41 RBIs in 148 games for the Cubs last season. His trade was announced, and then 30 minutes later, the Cubs issued a release that they had signed Fowler to a one-year, $8 million contract. Manager Joe Maddon said Coghlan was "blindsided" by the trade.

"[Coghlan] was upset, and he'll be the first one to tell you that," Maddon said. "He enjoyed last year a lot. Being involved in a winning situation for the first time meant a lot to him personally."

Brooks, 25, has pitched part of the last two seasons in the big leagues with the Royals (2014-15) and the A's (2015).

"So much of our starting pitching depth is tied up in our bullpen, it's nice to have another starting option, one with options who, if necessary, can bounce between Triple-A and the big leagues," Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein said.

The Athletics acquired Brooks last July as part of the trade that sent Ben Zobrist to the Royals. Brooks has gone 3-5 with an 8.38 ERA in 15 big league appearances, including 10 as a starter.

Brooks thanked the Athletics on Twitter, saying: "This game is all about opportunities. Glad that the @Athletics gave me one, and now onto the @Cubs for more opportunity. #thankyou #blessed"

The right-hander combined to go 7-5 with a 3.56 ERA in 20 appearances, all but one as a starter, between Triple-A Omaha and Nashville last season. He struck out 103 batters and walked only 21 in 118 2/3 innings pitched, an average of 7.8 strikeouts and 1.6 walks per nine innings.