The Chicago Cubs have officially begun the process of rebuilding a down-and-out franchise, by sending veteran starting pitcher Ted Lilly and shortstop Ryan Theriot to the Los Angeles Dodgers for Blake DeWitt and two prospects.
The news isn’t much of a surprise, with rumors flying around the league that Lilly would be dealt any day now. That day was today and Lilly will give the Dodgers a proven pitcher for the team’s starting rotation. Los Angeles still has a lot of work to do with a little over two months to go in the regular season. Lilly is expected to step in right away and give the Dodgers a boast in the wins and ERA departments.
Lilly’s stats are more reflective of the Cubs as a whole, rather than focusing all of the attention on the 11-year veteran. At 3-8 on the season, Lilly excels with a 3.69 ERA, 1.14 WHIP all while holding opponents to a .236 batting average.
Theriot will head West with Lilly, upgrading the Dodgers infield defense and giving the team a spark at the top of their lineup. Theriot’s batting .289 on the season, with one home-run, 21 RBI’s, and .320 OBP. The 5-year veteran will do everything he can to get back to the playoffs, with the Dodgers seven games back of the division leading San Diego Padres.
The Cubs get a solid player in DeWitt, who will turn out to be a long term asset at second base. He turns 25 next month so Chicago fans can look forward to a young, but talented double-play combo in DeWitt and Cubs shortstop Starlin Castro.
Chicago will continue to try and make some deals as the trade deadline comes and goes, but it’s apparent that Cubs management and general manager Jim Hendry are heading in a different direction.
Derrek Lee was recently approached with a trade request from Hendry, but Lee turned down the chance to head elsewhere enacting the 5-10 option on his contract. Disgruntled pitcher Carlos Zambrano has also come up in several discussions.
With only two months left in the regular season, its guaranteed that the Chicago Cubs will look like a completely different team by next year.