Ryan Dempster is still expected to return after the All-Star break (which is actually creeping up on us in a week), but, after a mound session yesterday, he said he didn’t want to rule out returning this weekend, before the break.
Don’t get your hopes up on that.
“If it keeps feeling good, anything’s possible,” Dempster told reporters after talking about returning in New York this weekend. “But at the same time I’m not going to try and rush something. I’m just going to make sure it’s ready to go. I don’t want to go out there and put us as a team at a disadvantage by not being ready to throw 90, 95, 100 pitches … [or] 140.”
Although his turn in the rotation will come up one more time before the break (on Sunday), and it’s nice to hear his positivity, no one is expecting Dempster to actually return this weekend.
Dempster threw about 40 pitches off the mound yesterday, and felt good. He’s felt good all through the recovery process after hitting the disabled list in mid-June with a sore right lat. As of right now, neither Dempster nor Dale Sveum expect that Dempster will need a minor league rehab start after the break before returning.
And, when he does return, Dempster thinks he’ll be good to pick up where he left off. Well, mostly – he was on a 22 inning scoreless streak when he went on the DL.
“Yeah, I hope so,” Dempster said of continuing his impressive streak. “Obviously, going out there and not giving up runs every time is kind of unrealistic. But at the same time, I feel good about executing my pitches and that’s all I can worry about. For as bad as I felt, I feel really good right now.”
Once Dempster returns, he’ll likely have a couple starts to re-establish himself in the eyes of possible trade suitors. No pressure.