ATLANTA -- The Atlanta Braves, who made postseason an annual event for a 14-year stretch, made a move Monday in which they believe will put them back into the playoffs in third baseman Chipper Jones' final season.
The Braves acquired veteran starter Ryan Dempster from the Chicago Cubs, who is yielding a league-leading 2.11 ERA this season, according to a Braves official with knowledge of the trade.
But Dempster has 10-and-five rights and would have to approve the deal.
The official spoke to USA TODAY Sports on condition of anonymity because the trade has yet to be announced. Dempster would be a welcome addition to a team whose starters are yielding a 4.34 ERA this season.
Dempster appeared in the Cubs clubhouse before Monday's game in Pittsburgh and declined to discuss the rumors. He wrote via his foundation's Twitter account:
"There is no trade don't know where this info came from?"
A second tweet about 20 minutes later read:
"My account has not been hacked #RD46"
Cubs manager Dale Sveum also said the deal was a "fabrication."
Dempster is in the final year of his four-year, $60 million deal that pays him $14 million this year, and the Braves are expected to try to work out an extension before the season's conclusion.
The Braves, who collapsed down the stretch last year, have made the playoffs just once in the last six years, and haven't gotten out of the first round since 2001. The Braves, 52-43, are 3 ½ games behind the Washington Nationals, who also were pursuing Dempster.