Results tagged ‘ Ryan Dempster ’

7/25 Braves still interested

Here’s Braves GM Frank Wren’s take on the Ryan Dempster situation:

“If this deal materializes, we have the framework of a deal with the Chicago Cubs,” Wren said Tuesday. “If it doesn’t, then if something else were to present itself, then they know we are going to move on to other things.

“The unfortunate part is that it got public,” Wren said. “These things happen.  But when players have no-trade (clauses), whether contractual or as a 10-and-5, it creates additional difficulties for all of us to complete because once there is a window of opportunity for stuff to get out, it’s out.  It just does.  That’s the way it is in today’s world.

“It was an opportunity to get one of the premium arms in this Trade Deadline market and arguably the guy that is pitching the best in baseball,” he said of Dempster. “That’s the positive side.  The negative side is that it hasn’t gone through as quickly as we would have liked.”

Dempster will start for the Cubs on Wednesday.

– Carrie Muskat


7/24 Dempster says he’s weighing options

Ryan Dempster said he’s considering his options, and may not decide until just before next Tuesday’s Trade Deadline.

“I want to look everything over before I make a decision, and I’ve got time to do that,” Dempster said Tuesday. “There’s a week before the Trade Deadline.”

Dempster, 35, who leads the Major Leagues with a 2.11 ERA, is scheduled to start Wednesday for the Cubs against the Pirates, and expects to make that start.

As a player with 10 and 5 rights, Dempster has veto power over any deal. He wouldn’t specify which teams he was considering.

“I’m just trying to look over everything and make the best decision for me and for my family and what I need to do,” he said.

As for reports that he was blindsided by the deal, Dempster said the Cubs front office has kept him up to date on everything. He didn’t expect it to be made public.

“I haven’t made any decisions on anything,” he said. “I’m looking at everything and trying to explore every option and do what’s best for me.”

His time frame?

“About seven days,” Dempster said, which would be the July 31 Deadline.

Dempster was sitting in the clubhouse at PNC Park on Tuesday while talk about him and trade rumors was being discussed on MLB Network. He kept his head down, working on a crossword puzzle. The Braves have reportedly agreed to a deal with the Cubs in which Chicago would get 22-year-old Randall Delgado. The Dodgers also are interested.

Dempster said he isn’t requesting a contract extension for next year as part of the deal, but did admit that anybody would be looking for some security.

“The Chicago Cubs will do what’s best for the Cubs and I’m going to do what’s best for me,” Dempster said.

– Carrie Muskat


7/24 Dempster’s latest Tweet

We may find out whether Ryan Dempster will accept a trade to the Braves on his Twitter account. Today, he tweeted: “Nothing official to report. You will be the 1st to know.  Thnx to all my fans for the support #RD46

The Cubs and Braves have reportedly reached agreement on a deal which would send Dempster to Atlanta for 22-year-old pitcher Randall Delgado. It’s up to Dempster to decide. He has 10-and-5 rights — 10 years in the Majors, five with the same team — and can veto any deal.

Reports that Dempster was “blindsided” by the deal are incorrect. Sources say he did know about the Braves offer, but was surprised at how public the deal became before he had made his decision. Dempster’s next scheduled start would be Wednesday for the Cubs against the Pirates.

– Carrie Muskat


7/24 Trade rumors

Ryan Dempster will likely make a decision today regarding whether he’ll accept a deal to the Braves. The Cubs and Braves were believed to be finalizing a deal, which requires Dempster’s approval because of his status as a 10-and-5 player (10 years in the big leagues, five with the same team). The Braves were reportedly offering right-handed pitcher Randall Delgado.

Dempster isn’t the only Cubs player drawing attention leading up to the July 31 Trade Deadline. The Dodgers, who still could be pursuing Dempster, also are inquiring about Matt Garza. One report said the Dodgers would deal top pitching prospect Zach Lee to the Cubs for Garza, but a baseball source told’s Ken Gurnick that was premature. Lee was reportedly the player the Cubs asked for in the Dempster talks, but the Dodgers didn’t want to move him for a two-month rental player. Garza, on the other hand, would be under club control through arbitration for one more season.

However, the Dodgers also need a run-producing corner infielder at least as badly as a starting pitcher. Lee apparently still has significant trade value, even though he has struggled to a 9.45 ERA since being promoted to Double-A last month.

And it’s not just the Cubs pitching that’s drawing interest. The Orioles are reportedly asking about first baseman/outfielder Bryan LaHair.

Dempster’s departure would not just impact the Cubs rotation, but the players. Jeff Samardzija gives the veteran credit for helping him get on track this year.

“He’s easy to watch how he attacks hitters and it relates to me very well,” Samardzija said. “The list goes on — I could sit here all day and tell you what Demp’s done for me. It’s good to have that veteran mind and those veteran eyes around me at any point in the game — ‘Hey, I’m seeing this, and I’m seeing that.’ He’s been that guy for a long time.”

– Carrie Muskat

7/23 Vote for Dempster

Ryan Dempster has been in the news lately because of trade rumors but his foundation is focused on helping children and families dealing with 22q. For their efforts, the Dempster Family Foundation has been selected as a top five regional finalist in “most effective awareness campaign by a charity” in the fourth annual CLASSY awards. The foundation was selected from a pool of 2,400 nominees. You can vote for the Dempster Family Foundation until Thursday. Go to the link, and select the Midwest charities. You’ll find Dempster’s group.

7/23 Dempster update

Ryan Dempster most likely will be dealt before the July 31 Trade Deadline, just not on Monday to the Braves.’s Mark Bowman reported that the Braves have reached an agreement to acquire Dempster from the Cubs. But the deal has not been officially completed. Because Dempster has played in the Majors for at least 10 years and has been with the same team for at least five years, he has the right to veto any trade.

Dempster, who leads the Major Leagues with a 2.11 ERA, declined to comment Monday on the rumors. He did deny reports that a deal had been completed on his Dempster Family Foundation Twitter (@RyanDempsterFDN), saying, “THERE IS NO TRADE dont know where this info came from!”

Cubs assistant GM Randy Bush said Monday: “There’s nothing to report.” Manager Dale Sveum wasn’t too happy with how the rumor spread.

“I found out when I came in off the field from early [batting practice],” Sveum said. “Somebody said they saw it on the [Cubs] website, so I got on the website and saw it, and called the higher ups to make sure, and they’re like, no, nothing’s happening, I don’t know where that came from. That’s where we are with that.”

The “higher ups” would be Theo Epstein, Cubs president of baseball operations, and general manager Jed Hoyer, and neither would comment on the report. Sveum didn’t deny that a deal could happen. There’s still time.

“The team, the whole thing was news to me — the team obviously is the one that leaked it out, or it came out of their city,” Sveum said of the Dempster to Braves reports. “Obviously, we can’t sit here and say it can’t happen. Anything can happen at this point. We have eight days until the deadline. All the teams that are involved and want starters and need starters are all in play.”

Was it unfair for Dempster to go through this?

“I think it’s very unfair for ‘Demp’ to have to have to deal with this,” Sveum said. “He’ll have to deal with it today, deal with it tomorrow. I’ve had five phone calls — ‘Hey, did you guys trade Dempster?’ You can only imagine what he has to go through. It’s very unfair for anybody to go through something that’s a complete fabrication.”

Atlanta manager Fredi Gonzalez couldn’t elaborate on the reports.

“I know what you guys know, basically the same thing, maybe a little bit more I’m not going to lie to you about that,” Gonzalez told the media in Miami. “But that’s all I know right now. We’re in a holding pattern.”

It was no secret the Cubs were trying to deal Dempster, 35, before the deadline but it was his call as to where he’d go. He had given Epstein a list of which team he would prefer.

– Carrie Muskat

7/23 Dempster to Braves’s Mark Bowman reports Monday the Braves have acquired pitcher Ryan Dempster from the Cubs. Young hurler Randall Delgado could potentially head to Chicago in return.

Dempster, 35, who has the best ERA in baseball among starting pitchers at 2.11, is signed through the end of this season. The two-time All-Star has won 10 or more games in each of the last four seasons and is 5-4 this year. Dempster has recorded a quality start in 10 of his 15 outings and has surrendered more than four runs in just one appearance.

The Braves signed Delgado, 22, a native of Panama, as an amateur free agent in 2006. He was 4-9 with a 4.42 ERA this season.

The Cubs, at 38-56 entering Monday’s action, are expected to be major sellers before the July 31 Trade Deadline. Atlanta, on the other hand, sits 3 1/2 games behind Washington for the National League East lead. The teams split a four-game set at Nationals Park over the weekend. The Braves hold a half-game edge over the Dodgers for the second NL Wild Card spot.

Earlier this season, Atlanta lost promising young starter Brandon Beachy to Tommy John surgery. The 25-year-old had posted a 5-5 record and 2.00 ERA in 13 starts prior to being shelved for the year. Atlanta recently took a flier on veteran Ben Sheets, who has delivered a pair of scoreless, victorious outings since joining the staff.

– Carrie Muskat

7/21 Cubs lineup

The scouts who came to watch Ryan Dempster most likely will be in the crowd on Saturday to see Matt Garza make his start against the Cardinals. Garza is another option for playoff-contending teams looking to improve their rotation before the July 31 Trade Deadline. He has a 2.12 ERA in seven home starts compared to a 5.67 ERA in 10 road outings. Among pitchers who qualify for the ERA title this season, Garza’s 3.55 difference between his home and road ERAs is sixth-highest in the Majors. The Astros’ Bud Norris leads all pitchers with a 5.19 difference between his home ERA (2.27) and his road ERA (7.46). Let’s see if Garza can turn that around Saturday night at Busch Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 6:15 p.m. CT. Here’s the lineup:

DeJesus CF

Castro SS

Rizzo 1B

Soriano LF

LaHair RF

Soto C

Barney 2B

Valbuena 3B

Garza P

– Carrie Muskat

7/21 Dodgers on hold re: Dempster

The Dodgers haven’t given up on landing Ryan Dempster, although the tone of rumors cooled noticeably Saturday. Even manager Don Mattingly seemed to be preparing himself for the deal to fall apart.

“Other teams have agendas to build or rebuild, and to put two teams together to make a deal is not as easy as it sounds,” Mattingly told reporters in New York, including’s Ken Gurnick. “But if we’re in position to pick up somebody that can help, we’re going to do it.”

That said, the Dodgers still are considered by many the favorites to land Dempster. The pitcher can virtually dictate where he ends up because he has trade-veto power and he’s rumored to prefer the Dodgers, where he would be reunited with buddy Ted Lilly.

Meanwhile, the Dodgers reportedly are refusing to deal pitching prospect Zack Lee for Dempster because Dempster would essentially be a two-month rental as an upcoming free agent and the Dodgers invested $5.25 million to sign Lee in 2010.  If the Dodgers trade Lee, it more likely would be for a player the Dodgers could control beyond this year, someone like Padres third baseman Chase Headley, who won’t be a free agent until 2015. The Cubs are believed to be holding out for Lee.

– Carrie Muskat

7/21 It’s Dempster’s call

Ryan Dempster’s scoreless inning streak ended Friday while the countdown continued for how long he will remain with the Cubs. Dempster, who was being aggressively pursued by several teams prior to the July 31 Trade Deadline, served up four runs on seven hits and two walks over six innings in the Cubs’ 4-1 loss to the Cardinals. His ERA rose to 2.11, but it’s still best in the National League. He’s aware of the rumors.

“I’m not naive,” Dempster said. “I realize everything that’s going on. I’m well aware [a trade] can happen at any minute. I’m not going to walk on eggshells or worry about that. I can only focus on what I can focus on, and that’s going out there today and trying to pitch and do my job. Now my focus is to work hard tomorrow and get ready five days from now.”

Perhaps the reason he can be so calm is that Dempster is calling the shots. As a player with 10 years in the big leagues and five with the same team, he can veto any deal.

“It’s awesome being the hammer and not the nail,” Dempster said.

He didn’t take the mound at Busch Stadium thinking it might be his last start for the Cubs.

“Maybe that’s why I’m not so uneasy about it because at the end of the day, it’s my decision,” he said.

Was it his last start for the Cubs? Dempster most likely didn’t follow the rumors on Twitter on Friday, which ranged from him being dealt hours before his start, to talks dragging out for a few days.

“[The media] has a job to do and I understand that,” Dempster said of the rumors. “For me, it’s just business as usual and I have to do what I have to do. Nothing has changed for me. I have to go out and get ready for my next start. I’m sure if they have something of any substance to it, they’ll come up and ask me, but until then, I just worry about what I can do.”

He doesn’t hesitate when his phone rings.

“I’m hoping its Publisher’s Clearing House — Ed McMahon maybe,” he said.

Here’s the real shocker — despite all the rumors, Dempster could end up staying with the Cubs.

“If I’m going to go, I want to go win,” Dempster said. “For right now, I’m a member of this team and I want to do the best I can to be a good teammate and go out there and do my job when I’m asked to do my job.”

– Carrie Muskat


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