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MLB roundup: Red Sox P Dempster will not play in 2014

The SportsXchange

Boston Red Sox right-hander Ryan Dempster told Fox Sports' Ken Rosenthal on Sunday that he will not pitch this season because of "physical reasons and his desire to spend more time with his kids."

Dempster was a disappointing 8-9 with a 4.57 ERA in 171 1/3 innings last year after signing a two-year, $26.5 million free-agent deal.

The Red Sox will place Dempster on the restricted list and he will not receive his $13.25 million salary for this year.

Dempster said neck problems factored in his decision.

"I don't feel like I am capable of performing to the ability and standard that I am accustomed to," Dempster said. "I feel it's in the best interest of both the club but most importantly, myself, to step away from playing baseball at this time. The time is right. I'm not saying retirement but I definitely won't be playing this season."

Dempster, 36, is 132-133 with a 4.35 ERA over 16 seasons.

--- The Atlanta Braves and All-Star closer Craig Kimbrel avoided salary arbitration by agreeing to a four-year contract.

The deal is worth $42 million, according to multiple reports. It includes a club option for $13 million for 2018 with a $1 million buyout.

Kimbrel can also get a bonus of up to $3.5 million at the end of the contract based on All-Star appearances, MVP and Cy Young Award voting, and games finished. That brings the value to potentially more than $58 million.

In 2013, Kimbrel had a 1.21 ERA and led the major leagues with 50 saves.

---The Philadelphia Phillies finalized a one-year, $16 million contract with free-agent right-hander A.J. Burnett.

An option for a second year could make the deal worth up to $33.5 million if he reaches 30 starts both years, according to ESPN. If the mutual option for 2015 is not exercised, Burnett has a player option for $7.5 million.

Burnett, 37, pitched for the Pittsburgh Pirates the past two seasons. In 30 starts last season for Pittsburgh, Burnett went 10-11 with a 3.30 ERA.

---The Red Sox signed right-handed reliever Francisco Cordero to a minor-league dea.

The signing was first reported by the Boston Herald.

Cordero, a former closer, missed 2013 after having shoulder surgery.

--- Chicago White Sox relief pitcher Nate Jones will be sidelined three of four days to rest a gluteal strain, according to Jones expects to be ready for the start of the regular season.
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