MILWAUKEE -- Jim Edmonds' now-former Brewers teammates expressed bittersweet emotions about the veteran's trade to Cincinnati on Monday.
"We're happy for him," fellow outfielder Corey Hart said. "He signed on thinking we were going to be in the playoffs, just like the rest of us. We can always put on a good run, but he's happy he's going to a team that's in first place."
The Brewers dealt Edmonds into the thick of the National League Central race, and he was in the starting lineup Monday night for the first-place Reds against the second-place Cardinals. The Brewers started the night in third place, 11 games back of Cincinnati.
Brewers general manager Doug Melvin consulted with Edmonds, 40, before pulling the trigger on the deal. Word spread around the clubhouse over the weekend that a move was imminent, so players like Hart were not surprised Monday when the trade was official.
"We all kind of knew about it," Hart said. "Obviously, he's an older player and this might be it, and he's going to a first-place team with a legitimate shot to go to the playoffs this year. We're trying to find things as a group, and he might have realized that playing time might not be there anymore because they need to see what [recently promoted rookie Lorenzo] Cain can do and we're about to get [Carlos Gomez] back. We might find a run, but for him [it's a chance] to maybe go out on top.
"I think he was frustrated, just like all of us, because we were obviously hoping to be a playoff team and we thought we had a good chance," Hart said. "That's why he came here -- he thought we were going to be a winning ballclub. Now he has a chance to go play late into October, so you're happy for the guy."
Manager Ken Macha was disappointed to see Edmonds go.
"He was helping us out," Macha said. "This guy has a tremendous feel for the game, he studies the pitchers, knows the situation. That's a veteran guy that I hope our younger guys were listening to. He had a wealth of knowledge, and he took that knowledge out and applied it and did very well.
"I said to him a number of times that I hope he doesn't retire after this year. He still has got some gas in the tank. Best of luck to him, but not when he's playing against us."
Said third baseman Casey McGehee: "Who knows what his plans are beyond this year? If this is his last run at it -- I don't know if it is or not -- then it's a good situation for him. It's a little weird that it's in the division, but I hope it's something that in the end both sides look at it and say it worked for them."