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  1. Hey Dave, no mention of his age? I guess that’s tied up in injury to some degree, but doesn’t that kind of risk assessment play a pretty significant role in the analysis of the contract?

    Comment by colin — November 18, 2008 @ 5:56 pm

  2. A pitcher’s age just doesn’t matter very much. They don’t predictably gain skill as they grow, as hitters do, and they don’t decline as much as they reach their 30s. If Dempster was 26 or 36, it wouldn’t matter all that much in terms of his projection.

    Comment by Dave Cameron — November 18, 2008 @ 7:17 pm

  3. I think mileage on his arm is probably more like what I meant, then. Like the guys at FO have done with running backs and carries? Or doesn’t that matter either?

    Comment by colin — November 18, 2008 @ 10:07 pm

  4. Well, in answer to the age thing, look at 35-year-old Derek Lowe, a pitcher nobody (apparently) is concerned about in terms of age/mileage on his arm. He and Dempster have somewhat similar career profiles (and both throw a similar array of pitches): Lowe spent 2+ seasons essentially as a reliever, Dempster, about 3. Dempster has thrown 500 fewer career innings than Lowe, but started his MLB career only one season later (1998). 1400 IP isn’t a ton for 12-year veterans — oft-injured Ben Sheets, CC Sabathia, and Tim Hudson all have more innings in fewer years, and other oft-injured guys like Kerry Wood and Josh Beckett are only about 200 innings behind Dempster. So the only concern as far as injury goes for Dempster is whether he exceeded his ideal workload last year after only throwing 66 innings the year before. Given that he began his career as a starter, I don’t think it was that big a deal for him to pitch 200+ innings in ’08. If he’s even mostly-healthy in that ballpark and with that offense and defense, Dempster should be a 14-win pitcher for 4 years. Of course, it’s the Cubs….

    Comment by Josh — November 19, 2008 @ 11:06 am

  5. Dave,
    You said “At $14 million per season…”. 52/4=13. Not that it’s a BIG deal, but…

    Comment by Tyger — November 19, 2008 @ 11:09 am

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