Finally, the first domino has fallen in the pitching market for the 2012 MLB Trade Deadline. And that domino is Chicago Cubs‘ pitcher Ryan Dempster, as the veteran right-hander was traded to the Atlanta Braves today.
Dempster, 35, has had trade rumors spreading about him since early May, so it comes as no surprise that he is the first pitcher dealt. Ryan Dempster is in the midst of a phenomneal season. Although he only has a 5-4 record, Dempster leads the National League in earned run average at 2.11.
The Braves are in desperate need for pitching, so the short-term rental of Ryan Dempster makes a lot of sense. The Braves don’t even have a starting pitcher greater than a 2.0 fWAR – Tim Hudson and Craig Kimbrel are tied at 1.9 – so Ryan Dempster will fit in nicely behind the afformention Hudson. Brandon Beachy was the Braves best starter this season, but is shelved with an arm injury.
With the struggles of Mike Minor, Jair Jurrjens, Tommy Hanson, and pretty much every other pitcher not named Tim Hudson, the Braves needed to make a stand in order to make a charge at the pitching enriched Washington Nationals. As of right now, the Nationals are 3.5 games ahead of the Braves in the National League East. But the Braves do have half game lead over the Los Angeles Dodgers for the five-spot.
Here’s something from Keith Law on what the Cubbies are getting back.
UPDATE: Apparently, there is a snag in the Dempster deal, and it might not happen at all.
UPDATE 2: Sheehan said he was joking. What a Thurman Merman. No one knows what is going on right now. God bless Twitter.
UPDATE 3: It’s up to Dempster, apparently.
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