Braves and Cubs announce four-player trade

ATLANTA – The Atlanta Braves and Chicago Cubs announced tonight that the two clubs have completed a four-player trade. The Braves have acquired left-handed pitcher Paul Maholm, outfielder Reed Johnson and cash considerations from the Cubs in exchange for right-handed pitchers Arodys Vizcaino and Jaye Chapman.

Maholm, 30, is 9-6 this season with a 3.74 ERA (50 ER/120.1 IP) in 21 appearances (20 starts). He is 5-0 and owns a 1.00 ERA (5 ER/45.0 IP) over his last seven starts and the Cubs have gone 7-0 in those games. Since April 21, he is 9-4 with a 3.04 ERA (38 ER/112.1 IP) with 77 strikeouts and just nine home runs allowed in 19 appearances (18 starts). Maholm owns a career major league record of 62-79 with a 4.30 ERA over parts of eight seasons with the Pittsburgh Pirates and Chicago Cubs. He ranks second among active left-handed pitchers (min. 1000 IP) in fewest home runs allowed per 9.0 innings with a 0.84 mark (CC Sabathia, 0.74) since 2006. Originally drafted by the Pirates in the first round (eighth overall) of the 2003 June free agent draft out of Mississippi State, Maholm ranks fifth among left-handers in innings pitched since 2006 (1222.2 IP). Maholm is signed through the 2012 season with a club option for 2013.

Johnson, 35, is batting .307 (51-for-166) this season with 15 extra-base hits and 16 RBI over 75 games played. As a pinch-hitter, he is batting .448 (13-for-29) with a .484 OBP and five RBI. Johnson owns a career batting average of .284 over parts of 10 seasons with the Toronto Blue Jays, Cubs and Los Angeles Dodgers. Originally drafted by the Blue Jays in the 17th round of the 1999 June free agent draft out of Cal State Fullerton, Johnson ranks sixth in the major leagues against left-handed pitching since 2003 with a .313 (377-for-1205) batting average (min. 1200 AB).

Vizcaino, 21, appeared in 17 major league games (all relief) in 2011 and went 1-1 with a 4.67 ERA. He was rated by Baseball America as the organization’s second-best prospect and underwent successful “Tommy John” surgery on April 7, 2012. Vizcaino owns a 19-15 record with a 2.91 ERA over four minor league seasons with 279 strikeouts in 268.2 innings pitched. He was acquired by the Braves along with OF Melky Cabrera and LHP Mike Dunn from the New York Yankees in exchange for RHP Javier Vazquez and LHP Boone Logan on December 22, 2009.

Chapman, 25, owns a career record of 17-22 with a 3.95 ERA over seven minor league seasons. Chapman was signed by the Braves as a draft and follow (16th round) on May 8, 2006.