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Ex-Cub LeMahieu, NL batting leader, ‘happy’ how trade worked out

DJ LeMahieu homers off Spencer Patton in Sunday's eighth inning.

DENVER – DJ LeMahieu doesn’t play the what-if game after more than four seasons, even when the Cubs come to town — even as the best team in baseball. Even when asked.

“I’m certainly happy where I’m at right now,” said the Rockies second baseman, who doubled during Colorado’s eighth-inning comeback Friday night and went 3-for-4 with a home run Sunday during the Rockies’ rout of the Cubs to win the three-game series.

“The Cubs are a great team right now and a lot of fun to be a part of, but I’m very happy here,” he said. “And we have a lot of really good things going, and I’m really excited about the future here.”

LeMahieu, of course, is the former Cubs’ second-round pick, who was undervalued as a rookie by the incoming front office, who then threw him into the Ian Stewart-Tyler Colvin trade before the 2012 season.

Stewart washed out as a Cub. LeMahieu has won a 2014 Gold Glove, made the 2015 NL All-Star team and on Sunday tied Washington’s Daniel Murphy for the league lead in hitting (.345).

As tempting as it might be for him to imagine having stayed to become a part of the Cubs’ talented young core, “I don’t really look at it like that,” said LeMahieu, who added how impressed he is with how quickly the Cubs turned a competitive corner after a complete tear-down and rebuild.

“That would seem like a five or six year process more than the two or three,” he said. “You’ve got to give them a lot of credit for those young guys not only being ready for the big leagues but stars in the big leagues.”

The bitterness over the trade long gone, LeMahieu still nonetheless carries at least a small chip on his shoulder when facing the Cubs.

“Yeah,” he said. “It always feels good to play against them.”

After a 5-for-12 weekend, he’s hitting .324 with 11 extra-base hits and an .855 OPS against the Cubs in his career.

“It’s been a while now, and like I said, I’m happy,” he said. “But there’s no doubt it always feels good against these guys.”