Welcome back, Demp
Jim Hendry just spoke to the media to announce that the Cubs have re-signed right-hander Ryan Dempster to a four-year contract. We’ll be talking to Demp around 3 p.m. today.
Some of the things that Hendry talked about:
- Making this deal was a priority both for the Cubs and for Ryan. Jim said that there was “No doubt in any of our minds that Ryan would have exceeded this deal on the streets three or four weeks from now.”
- Jim explained that the organization doesn’t feel that 2008 was a fluke: “One year didn’t get him four [years]. Five years being around Ryan Dempster got him four….He’s still got five or six good years in him, there’s no doubt in my mind.” Hendry said that Demp was underrated as a closer and healthy — being in the training room only “one time for a rub down.”
- Looking forward, Jim said that this deal and the trade for Gregg knocked out priorities to maintain a high level in the rotation and bullpen. But he added that it’s no secret the team is still trying to get more left-handed in the lineup.
- He also expressed that the ownership situation has not impacted him negatively, that he has never felt hamstrung by payroll. He added that he doesn’t have the final payroll number for this year but that it will increase slightly.