Results tagged ‘ Ryan Dempster ’

7/20 It’s that time of year

Dale Sveum changed the setting on his cell phone Friday, just in case the team did make a deal regarding Ryan Dempster before his scheduled start against the Cardinals.

“It’s that time of year,” Sveum said Friday. “That’s why I kept my phone on high volume today. Obviously, you never know what could happen like that. One phone call changes the whole scenario. It can happen quick. It can happen with more than one guy.”

Dempster (5-3, 1.86 ERA) was reportedly being sought by several teams, including the Dodgers, who have made an offer for the right-hander. The Cubs were prepared just in case a deal was made. Casey Coleman was scratched from his start Thursday for Triple-A Iowa but a team official said that was done in case newly acquired pitcher Justin Germano could not get to St. Louis. The Cubs acquired Germano from the Red Sox late Thursday for cash considerations, and he did arrive at Busch Stadium in plenty of time for the game as well as a brief throwing session.

“You have to prepare for stuff like this,” Sveum said about losing a starting pitcher. “It’s never a perfect world because you never know that day or that hour when it’s going to happen.”

– Carrie Muskat

7/20 Good company

* Since 1908, just five Cubs pitchers have had longer scoreless innings streaks than Ryan Dempster’s current 33-inning run:

Pitcher (Season): Innings

Ed Reulbach (1908): 44 innings

Mordecai Brown (1908): 40 innings

Jimmy Lavender (1912): 37 2/3 innings

Bill Lee (1938) : 37 innings

Bill Lee (1938): 35 innings

Warren Brusstar (1983): 33 2/3 innings

Ryan Dempster (2012): 33 innings

Ken Holtzman (1969): 33 innings

Bob Rush (1952): 32 innings

 – Carrie Muskat

7/20 Cubs lineup

Ryan Dempster is in the Cubs’ lineup Friday for Game 1 of a three-game series against the Cardinals. Dempster enters with a 33-inning scoreless innings streak dating to June 5. That’s tied for the seventh-longest single-season scoreless innings streak by a Cubs pitcher in the last 104 years dating to 1908. With a 30 1/3 scoreless innings stretch as a reliever in 2005-06 and his current 33-inning scoreless streak as a starter, Dempster is the only pitcher in modern history (since 1900) to record 30-inning scoreless stretches as both a starter and a reliever (Elias Sports Bureau). Dempster’s 33-inning streak is the longest in the Majors since Cliff Lee’s 34-inning stretch last season.

Here’s Friday’s lineup:

DeJesus CF

Castro SS

Rizzo 1B

Soriano LF

LaHair RF

Clevenger C

Barney 2B

Valbuena 3B

Dempster P

– Carrie Muskat

7/20 Cubs consider Dodgers offer

Ryan Dempster is still scheduled to start tonight for the Cubs, who are considering the latest offer from the Dodgers for the right-hander. According to MLB.com’s Ken Gurnick, the Dodgers have made an offer but won’t get into a bidding war because they also need to add offense, preferably a corner infielder, even more than they need Dempster.

The Dodgers farm system also is a little thin in the kind of prospects needed to land All-Star caliber players like Dempster, the Padres’ Chase Headley, or the Phillies’ Shane Victorino. Theo Epstein, Cubs president of baseball operations, has said they’re looking to improve on pitching in the organization. That said, Dempster, 35, would be a pure rental for the Dodgers, which most likely is affecting the negotiations. He is in the last year of his four-year contract with the Cubs, which is paying him $14 million this season. Players must be with a team for an entire season in order to qualify for draft-pick compensation, according to the new CBA.

Dempster has played 10 years in the Major Leagues and five with the Cubs, so he has the right to veto any deal. However, the right-hander was expected to approve of a trade to the Dodgers, where he would be reunited with his friend, Ted Lilly.

Epstein has kept Dempster up to date.

“It’s just kind of like, ‘Hey, there’s teams interested,’ and that’s great,” Dempster said Thursday. “Nothing imminent, not that I know of. I’m sure if they have something, they’ll come to me. But right now, I’m just trying to get ready for [Friday's] game.”

The Tigers and Braves also were believed to be pursuing Dempster as well. FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reported Friday that talks regarding Dempster could “drag on a few more days.”

This season has been the right-hander’s best, despite two stints on the disabled list, and he currently leads the Major Leagues with a 1.86 ERA. He missed time April 21-May 3 because of a right quad strain, and was sidelined June 18-July 8 because of right lat tightness. His record would be better if he had gotten any run support early in the season. Dempster went 18 starts, dating back to August 2011, without a win until June 5 when he beat the Brewers. He has 10 quality starts out of his 14 this season. Dempster has won his last five starts without giving up a run, and his 33-inning scoreless streak is the longest by a Cubs pitcher since Ken Holtzman’s 33-inning streak in 1969.

The Cubs will have an extra pitcher on hand in St. Louis. Casey Coleman was scratched from his start Thursday for Triple-A Iowa but a team official said that was done in case newly acquired pitcher Justin Germano could not get there in time for Friday’s game. The Cubs acquired Germano from the Red Sox late Thursday for cash considerations.

– Carrie Muskat

7/19 Dempster focuses on Cubs

Ryan Dempster is still on the Cubs roster and prepping for Friday’s start in St. Louis. But he’s also a hot topic regarding trade rumors as the deadline approaches. Dempster has talked to the Cubs brass about potential moves but says no deal is imminent. As a player with 10 years of Major League service and the last five with the same team, Dempster can veto any trade.

“It’s just kind of like, ‘Hey, there’s teams interested,’ and that’s great. Nothing imminent, not that I know of,” Dempster told reporters at Wrigley Field, including MLB.com’s Cash Kruth. “I’m sure if they have something, they’ll come to me. But right now I’m just trying to get ready for tomorrow’s game.”

Dempster’s stock is at an all-time high, as the right-hander — who is 5-3 with a 1.86 ERA on the season — has tossed 33 consecutive scoreless innings. Dempster said he’s conscious of the streak, and said he “[wants] to shatter” Orel Hershiser’s all-time mark of 59 consecutive scoreless innings, set in 1988.

“I know I haven’t given up a run in five starts. I’m not naive,” Dempster said. “Like I said when I had a no-hitter going before, I know when I have a no-hitter going. I know that I have it, so I’m just going to try to keep it going, for sure. When you don’t give up any runs, you win games, so I like that.”

Between the scoreless-inning streak and preparing for his next start, Dempster said he doesn’t spend much time keeping up with the rumor mill. Although he said it’s flattering so many teams are reportedly interested in him, he’s still focused on his next start, which will take place in a Cubs uniform. On Thursday, Dempster played catch with his son Brady at Wrigley.

“I just think that there’s a lot of things between pitching and on-the-field stuff and then stuff about trades, and it’s a lot of information to try to process, so for me, I try to limit what I read and my focus is just going out there and pitching,” Dempster said. “Probably my biggest focus right now is just going out there and be ready every fifth day. I still have a job to do, and I take a lot of pride in that, so if I’m not putting my attention, my sole focus into that, I’m doing the team a little bit of a disservice.”

– Carrie Muskat

7/19 Looking ahead

As of now, Ryan Dempster is scheduled to start Friday in the Cubs series opener against the Cardinals. The subject of trade rumors, Demspter will face Kyle Lohse. The game will begin nearly five weeks in which the Cubs will play against NL Central teams (26 out of 32 games).

Friday: RHP Ryan Dempster (5-3, 1.86) vs. RHP Kyle Lohse (9-2, 2.80)

Saturday: RHP Matt Garza (5-7, 4.02) vs. RHP Jake Westbrook (7-8, 3.82)

Sunday: LHP Travis Wood (4-4, 3.92) vs. RHP Lance Lynn (11-4, 3.27)

– Carrie Muskat

7/18 Trade talks

The Cubs’ best trade chips may be pitchers Ryan Dempster and Matt Garza but one of the team’s goals heading into the Trade Deadline is to continue to improve the organization’s pitching. Theo Epstein, Cubs president of baseball operations, said calls have picked up as the July 31 deadline approaches.

“You can express a preference for pitching,” Epstein said, “but if we’re dealing with a club that has better position player prospects or we feel position players in a certain system are a safer bet or offer a higher upside, I don’t think it’s fair to pigeon hole yourself to one situation.

“As a whole, not specifically regarding these potential deals that are upcoming, we need to add a lot of pitching to the system,” Epstein said. “It’s not enough to have a handful. We need to have waves and waves coming into the system. We don’t have that. We hardly have one wave. We need to build a lot of pitching depth.”

Epstein said they will not make trades “for the sake of making moves,” adding “they have to put us in a better position.”

Dempster, who will be a free agent at the end of the season, is reportedly drawing interest from several teams, including the Dodgers. He has 10 years in the Major Leagues and five with one team, so he can veto any deal. Epstein would not reveal which teams Dempster favored. Garza, on the other hand, would be under a team’s control through 2013. Right now, the Cubs are looking to the future.

“It’s an opportunity,” Epstein said of the Trading Deadline. “We want to make the most of it. We wish we were looking to add and hopefully in the years going forward we’ll play better in the first three, four months of the season and be in a position to add going into the playoffs.”

– Carrie Muskat

7/18 Extra bases

* Despite going 2-for-10 with runners in scoring position on Tuesday, the Cubs are batting .296 with RISP in July after posting a .199 RISP average in June.

* The Marlins are 4-0 against the Cubs this year.

* Before giving up nine runs Tuesday, Cubs pitching had given up six runs in the previous five games combined. They have a 2.55 ERA in the last six games, including a 1.65 ERA by the bullpen.

* Ryan Dempster, scheduled to start Friday against the Cardinals, is the sixth pitcher since 1900 to win five straight starts in one season and not give up a run in those games. He joins Doc White (1904 White Sox), Don Drysdale (six straight starts for the 1968 Dodgers), Bob Gibson (1968 Cardinals), Orel Hershiser (1988 Dodgers) and Brandon Webb (2007 Diamondbacks).

– Carrie Muskat

7/18 Dempster, Garza rumors

The New York Post reports the Dodgers as the favorite to land Ryan Dempster before the Trade Deadline with the Tigers seen as “strong pursuers” and the Red Sox as long shots. FOX Sports reports the Cubs are exchanging names with teams interested in Dempster. The Red Sox are also interested in Matt Garza.

The Chicago Tribune noted Stephen Fife, who made his ML debut, is a former Red Sox prospect who could be included in a Dempster-to-Dodgers deal. Fife, 25, filled in for injured Chad Billingsley, and gave up one run over six innings Tuesday night. The Dodgers acquired him from the Red Sox last summer in the Trayvon Robinson deal. A sinkerball pitcher, he’d be a good fit at Wrigley. Dempster has a 1.86 ERA, tops in the Majors.

CBSSports.com reported the Royals have inquired about Garza. They have had a scout at this week’s Cubs games. Dempster is in the last year of his $14 million contract, and, essentially a rental player for the final months of this year. Garza is under team control for 2013.

– Carrie Muskat

7/17 Ryan Dempster rumors

ESPN’s Buster Olney reports the Red Sox are aggressively pursuing Ryan Dempster. As a player with 10 years in the Majors, and five with one team, Dempster has the power to veto a trade. He’s drawing a lot of interest from teams looking to fortify their rotation, including the Dodgers and Yankees. The Cubs are looking for top prospects in return. We’ll have to wait and see if Theo Epstein can make a deal with his former assistant GM, Ben Cherington.

But WEEI.com in Boston reported Tuesday that Major League sources say Dempster isn’t on the Red Sox’s wish list. Dempster also is a pure rental, which could influence what teams are willing to give up in exchange for th right-hander. Players must be with a team for an entire season in order to qualify for draft-pick compensation, so if Dempster is traded, the team that acquires him won’t get Draft picks if he leaves after this season. This is the last year of Dempster’s contract, and he will be a free agent.

FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal reports the Cubs are exchanging names with teams interested in Dempster, and lists the Dodgers, Tigers, Braves and Red Sox as teams in the hunt. Rosenthal also reports the Red Sox are interested in Matt Garza, although the price for him will be high. Garza is under club control through next season. He has a career 23-15 record, 3.34 ERA vs. AL East teams.

What do you think? Should the Cubs deal Dempster?

– Carrie Muskat

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