3/18 Dempster update

Ryan Dempster only has a few things to work on: his hitting and getting his pitch count up. Dempster made his third spring start on Thursday and gave up two runs on four hits, including Manny Ramirez’s two-run homer, over four innings, in the Cubs’ 7-3 loss to the Dodgers. He threw about 70 pitches.

“For the most part, I’m throwing the ball where I want to throw it and not fighting myself,” Dempster said.

He’s always working on trying to command his fastball and approaches each Cactus League start as if he was pitching during the regular season. Dempster said his slider wasn’t quite right, so that needs work.

In his only at-bat in the second, he grounded out to the pitcher.

“I didn’t feel very good at the plate,” said a straight-faced Dempster, who may be asking hitting coach Rudy Jaramillo for some lessons.

All that’s left for Dempster to do is get his pitch count up.

“It’s easy to make pitches when you’re fresh and relaxed,” he said. “When there’s a little bit of stress, you get up in pitch count, that’s when you bear down and make pitches. I feel ready for the season.”

— Carrie Muskat


It will depress me if the Cubs fail to start Castro at 2nd or SS to start the season….. I mean my God… All year long we hear about how the goal is to win and blau blau blau… A young kid comes in and is told if he works hard and earns a spot, he won’t be discriminated against… Castro has more than earned a spot and the sooner he sees Big Show pitching, the better… If he gets handed humble pie he goes to the Minors with something to work on and rebuilds his confidence, and if he hits .300 and does well, then he is a Albert Pujols manchild out of the gate… Either way, the Cubs win…. If I am an investor, I am wanting to develop Castro as fast as possible with no roof on spending…. Castro is more destined to play middle infield than Marmol was to be a closer… Someone please tell Cubs management to challenge Castro to find his roof… and to me it looks like he starts the season to see if he fails the last test in the Bigs… forget judge and jury… run the race and see who comes in first… then take the best 9 horses to the track… and I have to say… Why the heck not… The kid can play so let him play… if he fails, he knows the rules… but he hasn’t failed yet… He should get the benefit of the doubt till he makes too many errors or doesn’t hit the ball… I mean this is professional baseball… Prejudices against age aren’t supposed to happen… Ty Cobb played at 18… If Castro is the best, then he is the best… The Cubs have a better chance to win with the kid starting based on spring performance… and it sends a message to the vets that the Cubs aren’t playing.. no one’s job is safe… Play hard or go home.. As a Cub fan I would enjoy seeing Castro iven the spot he has earned, if in fact he has outplayed the other 2nd basemen or SS’s…. Theriot was orginally brought in to play 2nd anyway… Give the man of legal age a chance… a .400+ BA screams earned it to me…

mhi2sense, what you say makes sense and is common sense. Sadly, Hendry has painted himself and the organization into a corner. The veterans Hendry signed and the contracts he gave them block more than just Castro, the same can be said about Colvin. These kids have no chance the way the deck is stacked as of now and can only get called up if there is an injury. Hendry faces either more piled on embarrassment by displacing one of his veterans with a much younger, better, more promising rookie or more scrutiny from the owners which would expose what a bad job Hendry has done with the payroll. Until some tough decisions are made by a more competant GM than Hendry the status quo at best may lead to a play-off spot (MAY) but certainly not to a well thought out plan to develop home grown talent or control the payroll in order to add just a few pieces at trade deadlines in order to greatly improve the chances of not just a play-off spot but a World Series appearance. Keep preachin’ mhi2sense, maybe one day what you say won’t fall on the ears of a deaf choir.

I think Castro has the ability to hit in the majors, and field! But he needs to work on his defense more, he has the ability, he needs to be more consistent, setting his feet before he throws the ball, and all the little things. Some time in AAA will definitely not hurt him! He just needs a little polishing. Tyler Colvin however, is playing excellent in the outfield and at the plate, I’ll be rooting for him! I would love to see him make the team. I think he has the chance to be a starter, if he continues the way he is going.

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