Cubs wear seller's hat this time around
Club usually a buyer, but down year causes reversal
DENVER -- For the first time since 2006, the Cubs were sellers and not buyers at the Trade Deadline, and general manager Jim Hendry may not be finished dealing.
On Saturday, the Cubs dealt pitcher Ted Lilly, infielder Ryan Theriot and cash to the Dodgers for infielder Blake DeWitt and two Minor League pitchers.
"It's a good baseball trade for both clubs," Hendry said.
While the Dodgers were seven games back in the National League West entering Saturday, the Cubs were 11 games back in the Central.
"We didn't make moves to take away from the club until we felt like we didn't have a reasonable chance to get in," Hendry said. "I think you'll see the young guys progressing. People need to know and will know how they do the rest of the year will affect how we evaluate the club moving forward."
Teams can still make trades now that the non-waiver Trade Deadline has passed. Over the next month, deals involving players on the 40-man roster cannot be made unless the players already have cleared waivers. A player exposed to waivers can be claimed by any team and -- if there are multiple claims -- the player would be offered to the team with the worst record.
At that point, a team has 48 hours to either try to work out a trade with the claiming club or remove the player from waivers. A player can only be pulled back from waivers once, but if he clears waivers either the first or a second time through, a team can attempt to trade him to any club.
"I think you'll see a lot of action in the [trade] game still in August," Hendry.
DeWitt will join the Cubs on Sunday in Denver and most likely be inserted into the starting lineup at second.
"We think he's a real solid player," Hendry said. "We liked him for years when he first entered professional baseball. He's only 24 years old, and his better days are ahead of him."
One deal that didn't get done involved first baseman Derrek Lee, who invoked his 10-and-5 rights and rejected a trade to the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
"I respect that, and I have no problem with Derrek Lee staying and playing here to the length of his contract," Hendry said of Lee, who will be a free agent after this year. "It was just a normal business decision from my end. He said he was going to stay, and we moved on."
Neither Lilly nor Theriot had a chance to say goodbye to manager Lou Piniella, who had flown to Tampa, Fla., on Saturday to attend his uncle's funeral. This also is Piniella's last season with the Cubs. He announced July 20 he will retire.
Piniella has posted winning records in each of his first three seasons. What went wrong this year to prompt the trades?
"We, as players, didn't perform," Lilly said. "I felt like the front office, the organization, put the players on the field. We have the talent. This team had the talent to win.
"You take into consideration that for one, the game is challenging and there is some good competition out there. On top of that, we had guys who didn't perform to our potential. Those are the key factors. Sometimes things can snowball, and you try to get out of it.
"I'm of the mindset that it's up to us as players getting the job done on the field and we weren't able to do that," he said.
Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.