The Atlanta Braves could soon have another arm in Ryan Dempster, but any trade would first have to be approved by the Chocago Cubs ace pitcher.
Dempster earned that right for his ten years of service and five years with the same ballclub. Dempster will become a free agent at the end of the season but has told some of the Braves players that he would like to play in Atlanta.
Dempster, 35, currently posts an NL-leading 2.11 ERA in 15 starts with the Cubs and a 3.63 ERA in the 147 starts he’s made since the 2008 season.
The need for another arm in the rotation became more obvious after Jair Jurrjens struggled again in Sunday’s loss to the Nationals, leaving the game after 2.1 innings pitched and allowing six runs over nine hits and two home runs. Jurrjens’ ERA ballooned up to 7.04.
Starting pitching has been something of an Achilles heel for the Atlanta Braves, with their rotation posting a 4.34 ERA, the third-worst in the NL.
If Dempster approves this trade, it certainly makes the division race in the NL East more compelling. The Braves currently sit 4.5 games behind the division-leading Nationals and a half game behind the Pirates and the Dodgers for the two Wild Card spots. The potential combination of the Braves acquiring Dempster and the Nationals shutting down Stephen Strasburg after 165 innings definitely makes the NL East a division to watch.