Dempster has been sent to the disabled list with a quad injury, after a very good start to the season.
After a poor 2011 campaign, Dempster started off hot in his first three starts of 2012, allowing just three earned runs in 20+ innings of work, while striking out 23 hitters. He’s easily been the best Cubs starter to this point, which isn’t saying much when you consider who is at the back of the rotation.
But it’s disappointing to see, especially when you have a good pitching matchup set to take place in the final game of their series against the Cincinnati Reds, which would have been Dempster vs. Johnny Cueto.
Instead, it will be Randy Wells making his season debut for the Cubs against Cueto. Despite a decent spring, Wells was sent to Iowa, rather than the Cubs sending him to be the long man in the ‘pen.
It basically came down to Wells and Chris Volstad for that fourth spot in the rotation, with Volstad barely grabbing the spot. He’s been a big disappointment though, which makes this callup very intriguing.
It’s clear that Volstad has some things to work on, mainly his command. His ERA this season is over six, having allowed 11 earned in 16 innings of work. If Wells wants to stick around, here’s his chance.
You also have to take into account that Wells is now out of options. It wouldn’t surprise me if another move is on the horizon, even if that move results in Volstad ending up in Iowa.
But for now, the concern is on the game Sunday. The Cubs have a chance to grab their first series victory of the season, which has seen a miserable start. They’ll just have to rely on Randy Wells to help them do it.