Phil Rogers joined MLB.com in 2013, and has covered Major League Baseball since 1984.
|Jason Heyward's first season with the Cubs has been a challenge, as his batting average shows. But don't label it a disappointment before it's over.
More» Heyward's two-run homer pads the Cubs' lead|
|With six weeks left in the season, Los Angeles is one game ahead of San Francisco in the division. The clubs will meet nine times, beginning with a three-game series at Dodger Stadium from Tuesday-Thursday.
More» Gonzalez launches his third homer of game|
|The great National League MVP Award debate of 2016 is coming, if it is not already raging at your office, on your radio or in your favorite tavern.
More» Bryant goes 5-for-5 with two homers|
|Eddy Alvarez was on the medal podium the last time the world's best gathered under the Olympic flame. He was a part of the United States' short-track speed-skating relay team, which captured a silver medal in the 2014 Sochi Games.
|According to the National League Central standings, the Cardinals are 12 games behind the Cubs. Yet you can't help but wonder: Do they have the league right where they want it? There are teams you can write off when they're beat up and things aren't going well. Then there are the Cardinals.
More» Piscotty crushes three-run homer for a lead|
|Like many Cubs fans, actor John Cusack breaks into a sweat every time he hears Javier Baez's name in a trade rumor. He's had more practice than he'd like with this routine the last few years but it is only making it sweeter to watch Baez blossom into a special player.
More» Baez pads lead with two-run homer to left|
|Look beyond the most obvious choices for the National League Manager of the Year Award and you'll find another set of deserving candidates. These skippers are all in their first full season with either their team or their current set of responsibilities.
More» Mattingly praises Koehler, updates on Stanton|
|Matt Matheny will hand the ball to rookie Luke Weaver for his Major League debut in a Saturday afternoon showcase, hoping that Weaver and fellow rookie Alex Reyes can help the Cardinals survive what looks like a six-team fight for the two Wild Card spots.
More» Reyes hits 101 mph in perfect MLB debut|
|Facing a fifth starter is a good thing, right? Maybe not when you're going against the Cubs.
More» Hammel goes six frames in scoreless start|
|Clayton Kershaw won his third National League Cy Young Award two years ago, in unanimous fashion. He was rolling toward another no-brainer selection until his back shut him down.
More»Rogers talks about the candidates for the NL Cy Young|
|Can you have too much of a good thing? Not when you're piling up victories, but it can complicate the handing out of awards. It's problematic for voters when a team has two players arguably worthy of winning the Most Valuable Player Award in the same season, as do the Cubs in Anthony Rizzo and Kris Bryant.
More»Rogers gives his thoughts on who will win the NL MVP|
|Manny Machado was 16 when he met Alex Rodriguez through a mutual friend, and he was among those watching when Rodriguez announced that his final game will be played on Aug. 12. Machado then went out and became the first player to homer in the first three innings of a game since 1930.
More» Machado hits three homers in 10-2 win|
|Yasiel Puig could soon be put on waivers by the Dodgers, who seem noncommittal about continuing the relationship. He seems unlikely to sail through waivers, as his contract calls for only $14 million over the next two seasons -- a relative bargain for a player who has demonstrated his kind of upside.
More»Justice looks at the impact of Puig's demotion|
|Headed toward a potentially epic October, the best teams in the National League don't just march on. They get better.
More»Gammons discusses the Cubs, Giants' starters and more|
|Nobody wants their favorite team to be a seller in midseason. It's a sign that something's gone wrong or the team hasn't rebuilt quickly enough to be in a playoff race. But getting it right when you are a seller is just as important as landing the right pieces as a buyer, maybe even more important.
More»Cubs acquire top prospects Russell and McKinney|
|Chris Sale is back from suspension after his displeasure with the White Sox uniforms July 23. He'll make his 136th career start for the White Sox on Thursday, facing the Cubs in the final game of the Crosstown Cup series. He's never thrown a pitch 100 MPH. With all the emotions that will be going through him, will this be the night? More to the point: Will this be Sale's last start for the White Sox?
More»Chris Sale on being suspended by the White Sox|
|The Cubs may not be done after acquiring relief pitchers Aroldis Chapman, Joe Nathan and Mike Montgomery in recent days. They sure could use a left fielder, such as the A's Josh Reddick.
More»Phil Rogers discusses Chapman trade and more|
|Theo Epstein and the Cubs have agreed to a deal to acquire left-hander Aroldis Chapman from the Yankees, a source told MLB.com's Jesse Sanchez. The clubs have not confirmed. It's the kind of move the Cubs have been putting themselves in position to make for a couple years. They've gotten themselves in a strong position, and now they're pushing their chips to the middle of the table.
More» Epstein discusses trading for Chapman|
|The unthinkable has become feasible. The White Sox, who were already listening to trade offers for Chris Sale, could be more likely to deal him after the relationship between the star and his club appeared to come apart at the seams on Saturday.
More» Sale scratched from his start at last minute|
|Jose Quintana has got it all. He's highly skilled, durable, consistently works deep into games and is under control through 2020 at a below-market price. Yet it's time for the White Sox to cut him loose.
More» Quintana strikes out seven over six strong|