CINCINNATI — The NL Central-leading Cincinnati Reds got Jim Edmonds from the Milwaukee Brewers for Chris Dickerson on Monday, strengthening their outfield for a playoff run.

The trade gives the Reds a proven outfielder as they try to fend off St. Louis and reach the playoffs for the first time since 1995. The Reds led the Cardinals by two games heading into their three-game showdown in Cincinnati starting Monday night.

It also brings another former Cardinal to Cincinnati. General manager Walt Jocketty — who rebuilt St. Louis into a championship team before coming to Cincinnati — has turned to some of his former players to try to restore the Reds.

Jocketty traded for third baseman Scott Rolen last season, a move that has given the Reds a veteran leader and another hitting threat. He signed reliever Jason Isringhausen to a minor league deal last month, hoping he can help Cincinnati's bullpen down the stretch.

The Reds' offense has struggled with two young outfielders — Drew Stubbs and Jay Bruce — counted upon heavily this season. Stubbs was out of the starting lineup for five games recently. He's batting .234 with 14 homers and leads the team with 112 strikeouts.

The 40-year-old Edmonds was out of baseball last year, his career on hold because of injuries. He wanted to play for the Cardinals again, but ended up signing with the Brewers during spring training. He makes $850,000 with the chance for another $1.75 million in bonuses.

Edmonds batted .286 with eight homers and 20 RBIs in 73 games for the Brewers. His stint in Cincinnati could amount to a final go-around – he talked recently about retirement because years of injuries have taken a toll.

Dickerson has missed most of the season because of a broken bone in his right hand that required surgery. He batted .205 in 20 games before being injured. He has been on a rehabilitation assignment in the minors.