10/29 Dempster exercises option

Cubs pitcher Ryan Dempster has exercised his $14 million player option for 2012. The Cubs were informed of his decision on Saturday. Dempster, 34, is coming off a 10-14 season in which did reach the 200 inning mark for the fourth straight year. However, he also posted his highest ERA in four seasons as a starter with the Cubs (4.80) and had one of the worst Aprils, posting a 1-3 record and 9.58 ERA in six starts.

“I’m excited,” Dempster said Saturday. “I had a chance to talk to Theo [Epstein, president of baseball operations]. I’m excited for the Cubs organization and not just for myself personaly. They want to be a place where they’re not trying to just win the World Series. They want a chance to be contenders every single year. I think that’s awesome.”

Dempster was impressed by Epstein, who left the Red Sox after nine years as the general manager to take over the Cubs baseball operations.

“He’s had some succes and that gives you a lot of confidence,” Dempster said. “As players we’ll go out there every year and try to do the best we can. I think they’re going to hold us to the highest standard. That’s important that we live up to that.”

The right-hander was selected as the Cubs’ Opening Day starter, and now joins Matt Garza, Randy Wells and possibly Carlos Zambrano. Dempster will be back in Chicago Thursday to host an event at The Palm Restaurant for his foundation. He definitely wasn’t happy with the 2011 season.

“I just want to go out and do better,” he said.

– Carrie Muskat

2 Comments

Do better? DUH. If the situation was reversed and it was a team option for 14 mil one has to wonder if Epstein would have been 14 million dollars worth impressed by Dempster. I think not. A nice little giftwrapped present from Hendry to Dempster.
Of course Dempster was impressed by Epstein, after so many years of uninspired rosters by Hendry…..

Great… 14 million for a back of the rotation starter. I guess when you have an ERA of almost 5, it would be a no-brainer to exercise your option so you don’t have to look elsewhere for a fraction of that.

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