(Reuters) - The Chicago Cubs have gotten an early start on Tuesday's trading deadline by shipping out pitcher Paul Maholm, catcher Geovany Soto and outfielder Reed Johnson as they reshape their struggling team.
The Cubs announced on their website (Chicago.cubs.mlb.com) that they have sent Soto to the Texas Rangers and also reportedly dealt Maholm and Johnson to the Atlanta Braves.
In exchange, the Cubs will receive pitchers Arodys Vizcaino and Jaye Chapman from the Braves as well as a minor league pitcher from the Rangers.
Johnson is batting .302 this season while Soto is hitting just .199 and has dealt with a left knee injury.
Maholm is 9-6 with a 3.74 ERA. But the Cubs (43-58) have floundered and are well out of the National League Central race.
More moves could be on the horizon for the Cubs in advance of Tuesday's 4:00 p.m. EST trading deadline, signaling a new era under first-year president of baseball operations Theo Epstein.
(Writing by Jahmal Corner in Los Angeles; Editing by Ed Lane)