What else does Ryan Dempster have to do to get a win? On Thursday, May 3, Chicago Cubs starter Ryan Dempster saw yet another fantastic pitching performance go to waste. This was his first start after returning from injury and his fourth start overall in 2012. Combined, Dempster is now 0-1 with an ERA of 0.95. In 28.1 innings, Dempster has allowed three earned runs (five total) and only one home run. Yes, he has allowed less than one earned run per nine innings and still does not have a win.
In his four starts, Dempster has allowed one, two, zero, and zero earned runs respectively. Unfortunately, he has had very little (if any) run support, poor defense behind him, or bullpen failures. He should have at least three - maybe four - wins with the quality of pitching he has shown.
This time, he got three runs from three solo shots (Bryan LaHair, Starlin Castro, and Geovany Soto) but had the poor defense and bullpen in the ninth. After pitching eight shutout innings, he watched his bullpen and defense throw away the game in which he led 3-0. Three walks, an error, and one hit wiped out the three-run lead. Carlos Marmol walked the first two Reds hitters and another later. Third baseman Ian Stewart missed an easy double-play ball. Without the walks, though, that play would not have happened. The Reds took advantage and eventually tied the game. In the 10th inning, a hit, an error, and a sacrifice fly beat the Cubs.
Every team has a game like this once in a while, but we Cub fans are getting tired of seeing this happen so often. This year's team will have a tough enough time without throwing games away or the offense not supporting their starters. Combined, Dempster, Matt Garza, and Jeff Samardzija are 5-6 with a 2.40 ERA. All three have had great starts wasted, especially Dempster all four times out.
It was great to see LaHair answer critics again with his early-season power (seven home runs) and Castro and Soto each hit one out, Castro's first and Soto's second. It would have been even better, though, if the lead had held up.
Dempster is a professional veteran and will not let this keep him from pitching his best. Let us hope that the defense and the closer can tighten it up enough to get Dempster - and the Cubs - a few more wins. Dempster has done his part.
Chicago Cubs, Ryan Demspter Player Page, cubs.mlb.com, May 3, 2012.
Chicago Cubs, Sortable Player Statistics, Pitching, cubs.mlb.com, May 3, 2012.
Yahoo! Sports, Chicago Cubs at Cincinnati Reds Box Score, sports.yahoo.com/mlb, May 3, 2012.
Raymond grew up in Florida and began watching the Cubs on WGN in 1982. He became a fan in 1984 when Ryne Sandberg hit the two famous game-tying home runs off Cardinals closer and former Cub Bruce Sutter. Raymond then solidified his team loyalty when the Cubs won the division later that season and has been a fan ever since. Follow Raymond on Twitter @RayBureau.
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