Ryan Dempster's struggles continued in a bad way last night against the Indians in Terr Francona's return to Fenway.
The strike-throwing, innings-eating Ryan Dempster that the Red Sox saw in the early stages of the season has been missing in action, and last night marked the bottom of the barrel to date for the 36-year-old right-hander.
Dempster was the first of many Red Sox pitchers to take their lumps last night in the near four-hour, 12-3 beatdown at the hands of the Cleveland Indians at Fenway Park, allowing four runs on five hits with four walks in a season-low three innings of work.
There wasn’t a need to mince words for Dempster following the outing, as he bluntly said he needs to make better “quality pitches” several times to get major league hitters out. It’s just not happening right now.
“I’ve been doing this for a long time,” Dempster said. “The last couple games I haven’t been throwing the ball the way that I throw it. I’ll get back to doing that.”
In his last three outings, Ryan Dempster has been horrendous:
12.2 IP, 20 H, 15 ER, 11 BB, 12 K, 10.66 ERA, 2.45 WHIP
The most most glaring stat out of that line is the 11 walks. Dempster is a guy known for being a consistent strike-thrower who isn't afraid to attack the zone. The 36-year-old had 52 walks in all of 2012 with the Cubs. This year, he has racked 29 walks; on pace to easily surpass last year.
Let's hope it's just a bad stretch from Dempster, but clearly something is off. With Dempster pushing 40 and some eager young arms down in the farm, don't be surprised to see a DL-stint. Oh, let's call it a "sore hammy"...yeah that's it...
On the bright side, there is some National League blood (Phillies) coming into Fenway for his next start on Tuesday. Maybe that will be a nice refresher for Dempster to face a familiar lineup.
Rest of the links:
Globe: Francona gets warm reception in return | Globe: Quantity of Ryan Dempster’s pitches outnumbers quality in 12-3 loss to Indians | Globe: Ross catches five innings for Portland | Herald: Will Middlebrooks set back | Herald: Terry Francona proud of Cleveland revival | Herald: Indians give Terry Francona a rout of Red Sox | ESPNBoston.com: Terry Francona where he belongs