Atlanta Braves’ GM Frank Wren has been talking to the media today about the now (almost certainly) failed trade involving Ryan Dempster and Randall Delgado. I referenced it in today’s earlier Ryan Dempster post, but thanks to the Sun-Times, we now have a more complete transcript of his comments. And it includes a bit of what we’ve been looking to hear for some time: what exactly happened over the last week?

From Wren, via the Sun-Times:

In his case, from my understanding – and I’m only getting it second hand from the Cubs – they had a meeting with him a couple weeks ago and laid it out, and the primary two suitors were us and the Dodgers. And he had positive things to say about both, and he had a slight preference to the Dodgers because of Ted Lilly. He and Ted Lilly are best of friends and he’d like to go play with his friend. And I think there were also some personal issues that suited better for him. And as it went down, from my understanding, the Cubs informed him in the last week that the Dodgers weren’t really as aggressive as we were and they thought the deal was going to go with us. I think he was given a heads up along the way. I think it may be the way it was presented as far as coming out in the media [Monday]. I think that was blindsiding, not that he necessarily didn’t know this was coming down.

Wren is politely trying to say that it was his understand that, prior to the Cubs engaging him in serious discussions about a Dempster trade, they had received an indication from Dempster that he would accept a trade to the Braves, assuming the Cubs couldn’t get a great offer from the Dodgers. But Dempster knew all along that the Cubs were seriously talking with the Braves, and that this moment could be coming down the pipeline.

Again, this doesn’t look great for Dempster. But, two strong cautions: (1) this is second-hand info, and we still don’t *really* know what was said between the Cubs’ front office and Dempster, and (2) there are still several days left before the Trade Deadline. While it’s fair to react and offer your thoughts, just keep in mind that a great deal can happen in the next few days.

Also, here’s a big thing to keep in mind: we still don’t know that things haven’t played out exactly as Dempster and the Cubs anticipated: get a deal lined up with the Braves, and then see if the Dodgers will top it. Maybe the plan was, if the Dodgers don’t top it, then Dempster accepts the deal to Atlanta. We’ll probably never know now, because of the timing of the media leak, and the story breaking on Monday. It forced Dempster to explain himself (and reveal an obvious strong preference for LA), and it forced the Braves to say publicly that they’re “moving on.”

For his part, after today’s game, Dempster told the media that he understand Wren can’t wait on him, even though Dempster is still weighing his options.

Let’s keep the comments civil. I’m not asking you to not speak your mind, I’m suggesting only that you be thoughtful before posting.

UPDATE (at 2:57pm CT): Interesting additional comments from Dempster after the game. From Patrick Mooney, quoting Dempster: “If that’s still an option down the road, then that’s something I might look at to make the best decision for me/my family.”

UPDATE 2 (at 3:01pm CT): Paul Sullivan has a nice write-up of Dempster’s comments after the game, which suggest that he plans to think things over today and tomorrow (his off-day, when he’ll probably see his family). So maybe we’ll find something more concrete out by the end of the day tomorrow. Or not. Because, you know, why would any of this go according to plan?

UPDATE 3 (at 3:11pm CT): Fair to speculate that Dempster doesn’t want to go to Atlanta, but doesn’t want to formally reject the trade, because he knows at that time, the Cubs really do lose all leverage with the Dodgers (which hurts him, because that’s where he wants to go – and the Cubs are just as likely to keep him at that point). So he says he’s still thinking about it to try and buy the Cubs (and himself) more time to try and work out a deal with the Dodgers. But if the Dodgers don’t step up by Friday, then what? Or if the Braves really do come forward and say, “the deal is totally and completely off the table no matter what,” then what?

UPDATE 4 (at 8:58pm CT): Dave Kaplan actually got a quote from Theo Epstein on all of this, but it’s a non-quote – he essentially said, we haven’t commented on Dempster, and we’re not going to comment now. As expected. And it’s the right thing to do, by the way. Virtually no good can come from saying anything right now.

UPDATE 5 (at 9:01pm CT): Tim Brown reports that the Cubs have told “Dempster suitors” that they’re willing to grant a window to negotiating an extension. I kind of expected this was already happening, but it’s nice to get confirmation. Here’s the thing: I’m not really sure Dempster is going to want to actually receive an extension from anyone but the Dodgers – but they might be willing to up their prospect offer ever-so-slightly if they know they’ve got him for a couple more years. But, let’s be clear: it’s already July 25. There aren’t a lot of days left to give a team a “window” to negotiate an extension. Also: I strongly doubt the Braves have an interest in extending Dempster, now that I think about it. They’ve got so much young pitching, and they’ve got a cheap ownership group. Yes, they have money coming off the books, but do they really want to commit tens of millions to a 36+ year-old Ryan Dempster?

  • Kevin

    The Cubs now plan to keep Dempster and make him a qualifying offer during the offseason in hopes that he will net them a draft pick. Probably a good move since he’ll never feel comfortable pitching at Wrigley again. I’m not sure who’s stock plummeted faster, Joe Paterno’s or Ryan Dempster’s.

  • MichiganGoat

    Goat pops his head out of the sand sees his home is still over run by an angry mob that refuses to have a civil discussion, considers responding to the countless irrational comments, but instead goes to the fridge, grabs a couple Founders’s Devil Dancers and puts head back in sand, and hopes his home is too trashed when he reappears.

    • Fishin Phil

      Yes, but did you see your shadow??

      • MichiganGoat

        Nope there was too much trash and feces on the lawn to see anything.

        • Fishin Phil

          Damn, that means 6 more weeks of losing.

          • MichiganGoat

            Fine as long as its not six more weeks of this mess.

            • Cheryl

              Maybe the shadow will disappear and by the weekend there will be a difference.

  • Gcheezpuff

    I think I feel bad for Demp now… Just watched replay of his interview after the game and he visually seemed distraught. I can’t believe he is blind to the Cubs fans turning on him so quickly and he seemed emotional. I have always liked Demp and really would have liked to seen him come back as Cubs broadcaster at some point. I was extremely angry when this all went down, but now looking back, I think maybe everything unfolded too fast, caught him off guard, and he was forced to make his decision in the public eye. He still has never declined Atlanta, and it is clear he prefers LA, but really all he said was he needed time to think… Everything else has been media speculation painting him in a bad light. Even if he did originally say he’d consider the Braves, it is possible he received info that changed his decision, it could be that he made a mistake and changed his mind. The situation pisses me off, but however this ends, I think Demp has been good to Chicago and should make his exit knowing he can come back with fan support. I hope this blows over and fans welcome him back. It does really piss me off about the Braves trade not going through, but I am trying to look past that as overall Demp has been good to Chicago.

    • Leroy K.


    • cjdubbya

      Civil discourse? Holy crap. Cooler heads prevailing? It can’t possibly be!

      Thanks so much for the breath of fresh air – let’s hope a lot of others follow suit.

      It’s good to keep in mind that fan is indeed short for fanatic, and there’s been too much fanatical discussion lately.

    • LouCub

      The thing is, he knew the deadine IS CLOSE, he knew the Cubs are trying to trade him, obviously the ATL was an option, but it’s for 2.5 months…he can go wherever the hell he wants to go after that and maybe bring a ring with him as a consolation prize….If LA wants him now, why wouldn’t they want him in November without giving up any players for him…It isn’t like Atlanta is’nt in the race like KC or Houston, it’s a preferred destination for many players…You’d think he’d have enough time to have thought it over back when he was on the DL in June and every day since then!!!

    • Evan

      I think that the majoirty myself included were shocked when all this went down. To cover my all my bases I am going to use the word arguably when coming to Dempster as the most loved cub of the current cubs since Wood retired. The majority of us were under the impression that which ever gave the best deal Dempster would go to and how it all went down left a lot of the cub fans me included shocked. I do also feel the media had a lot ot do with it and it, however the fast majoirty of big name writers and columnist all concluded that L.A. and Atlanta were his bleived preferences in a trade, but now its believed he is solely focused on L.A. and the cubs with have no leverage. Many times after the intial shock sets in people’s emotions often turn to anger. Which is what I see happened here.

  • Leroy K.

    I truly believe the “average” Cubs fan, doesn’t know half of what’s going on….

    • Can’t think of a cool name

      And the other half agrees with you, correct?

  • White Sox Nation

    I couldn’t agree more with that comment.^^^^^^^^^

  • Cheryl

    Everything that could have been said has been said. There may be other trades on the horizon. Luke or Brett, who’s most likely to be traded now?

    • Brett

      Strictly speaking, it’s someone like Reed Johnson, Jeff Baker, or Shawn Camp.

      • dabynsky

        So this talk of 5-10 players being traded might fizzle…

        • rhino70

          You’ve got to have 5-10 players other teams want.

          Dempster and Garza are the only players that *have* to be dealt by the “trade deadline” on 7/31. That’s the only way the Cubs can make the best deal for either of them.

          After the “trade deadline”, the waiver process comes into play. Baker, Camp, DeJesus, Johnson, LaHair and Soto would most likely make it through and then be dealt, or dealt to the claiming team.

          If another team actually claimed Soriano, I’m sure the Cubs would just let him go and be done with the rest of his albatross of a contract.

          • dabynsky

            The Cubs have players that other team’s want. Teams giving up anything for them is the question.

        • Brett

          I thought 5 was about as high as it would go.

          • dabynsky

            The Astros have blown past that already:(

      • Cheryl

        Camp would seem to hae more of a market as a pitcher wouldn’t he? Any of the minor leaguers like itters have a chance of being traded?

        • Cheryl

          Computer problems again. Should have been have in first sentence and Vitters in second sentence. This new touch screen is for the birds, sometimes letters don’t register.

  • Kevin

    From a logical standpoint maybe Dempster’s only leverage with the Dodgers is if they agree to sign him to an extension right now. Once the season is over, its market value, for a 36 year old. Too bad it all played out this way, the Cubs ownership, organization and fans deserve more respect.

  • Mr. Mac

    So, to be clear, Dempster is the one that pulled the rug out from beneath the Cubs and it wasn’t the Cubs trying to push Dempster into something he didn’t want? Is that the consensus at this point?

    • rhino70

      Its that cut and dried.

      The media leak out of Atlanta is really what caused the whole mess. If the story doesn’t break on Monday, none of this nonsense happens.

      Everything I’ve read from Brett’s links, and a few other sources, indicates that Dempster knew the Cubs were dealing with the Braves. Once the story broke, he didn’t get the time his 10/5 rights guarantee him to make a decision privately.

      He’s never actually said no to a trade to Atlanta. He said he wants time to think about it.

      • Mr. Mac

        Thanks, Rhino. I’ve never been much of a Dempster fan so this doesn’t change anything for me, but I’m glad that the FO didn’t botch this. Shame on the Braves for leaking this to their media.

    • Evan

      Ya i tend to bleieve it to be that way and juding by the majoirity of the comments it seems a lot a people feel that way to.

    • Brett

      Most believe that, yes, though I’m not sure how they can all be so confident. I’m certainly not.

      • Mr. Mac

        What is your ultimate opinion (as of this moment), Brett?

      • MichiganGoat

        People need and love a villian and right now it’s Dempster

      • Evan

        I agree with you Brett. There is a lot more out there that we don’t know about. Im just upset because Dempster could have handled it better. Rather than your chaity twitter account stating that there was no trade and saying how he has no clue how people got this info along with leakes stating tha you were and blindsided why couldn’t have you just said something a long the lines of. There is no deal in place, but i have been told that they are nearing the end stages but the FO is still considerg other possibilities. So it gave Jed time to go back to the dogers and ask for their best offer where they could do one of 2 things A) give a resectable offer or B) call the bluff and were right back here. I am a die hard Cubs fan, go to wrigley often, whenever their in Millwaukee I go to all the games, and have been going to the convention every year since 98 so i know thatI am biased when it comes to the cubs so maybe I make no sense with this point.

  • Rich

    Why is WHITE SOX NATION posting here? Just curious. This is a Cub site, Bleacher Nation. To call yourself a nation, you should have a large amount of fans. White Sox nation is what like a few hundred. It is sad that White Sox fans know more in some cases of what the Cubs did in a game or Marmol’s ERA or what Castro did in a game.

    The White Sox have a great team, they have a really good organization and there are really die-hard Sox fans. I don’t understand the small attendance and lack of support for their team. The majority of Sox fans that I know could care less about what their team did as long as they have a better record than the Cubs or if the Cubs lost.

    I’ll never understand. But I wonder how many White Sox websites are out there and actually talking about baseball vs. bashing the Cubs and their fans. The White Sox could win 10 titles in a row and the Cubs would still be the more popular team. Frankly, I would take the 10 titles. But most Cubs fans at this site have a lot of knowledge about the game and the team.

    • MichiganGoat

      He’s been around for a while as well as some Cardinal fans, luckily the non-Cub fans that visit here are quite insightful and roll with the punches we throw them. The fact that other fans visit BleacherNation shows just how amazing a site Brett has built and maintains. Sadly the last couple days have brought a new group of posters and the site looks more aggressive than it should. This is the best place on the interweb, the best community, let’s not leave our trash on the lawn (this is not directed at you Rich, just the general tone the comments have taken recently). Go Cubs Go!

      • atfinch

        Goat – I would say though that the anti-Dempster sentiment isn’t just relegated to this site – I looked around just for this reason – to see how widespread the anger toward Dempster is and the majority of people have some resentment towards Dempster right now. And while most are civil about it, get their complaint out and that’s it, there are a handful on any site right now that harbor ill will towards Dempster. Which, I agree is a little much. Am I aggravated, as a diehard Cubs fan, about what has happened this week? Absolutely. Would I wish injury or worse upon Dempster? Not a chance.

        I tore my Achilles tendon last week and will be having surgery tomorrow and I have to say that despite the overwhelming negativity, this site has kept me somewhat entertained and distracted from what I’m about to go through tomorrow, and should continue to while I go through, from what I understand, will be awful rehab.

        Keep up the great work Brett! I know you’ve been working your tail off the past several days and we all greatly appreciate it!

  • florida Al

    this whole ryan dempster thing makes me sick, it makes him look like a total assbag while he isnt, but i understand his dilemma, wanting to go somewhere thats has a chance of winning but wanting to remain loyal to the organiztion that gave him a real chance after he blew his arm out and was the only one to give him a real chance of making a comeback. But this whole thing really looks like hes being a drama queen, saying one thing ” I want whats best for the cubs organzation” then backpedaling when he KNEW that Atlanta was the other option…I never was a huge dempster but now i just wanna wash my hands of this guy and dump him for a bag of balls.

  • Matt

    While we don’t know exactly what transpired, and may never know – it does seem Dempster is mostly to blame outside of whomever leaked the deal.

    Theo has been smart enough to not say a single word on the subject.

    If Dempster had followed that example he wouldn’t be in the bind he is now.

  • fortyonenorth

    I’ve been a Cubbies fan since 1973 and would truly love to see them get a great return for Demp. However, it is not RD’s responsibility to make sure that happens. Remember, RD doesn’t want to leave Chicago. He could have simply said “NO TRADE – PERIOD.” At least he seems to be willing to work with the FO to some extent. If I was fired (or laid off or whatever the analogy should be) would I fall all over myself in order to help the old company? No way. I’m not going to trash their servers, but I’m looking out for myself and my family. RD’s being civil and that’s all the FO and Cubs fans should expect.

    Now, if this all falls through and Demp stays with the Cubs, Theo and Jed should publicly take some of the heat. Tell the fans, “Things went down quickly. Ryan was considering the deal while we were still trying to work out the parameters. There was no ‘list’ – things just spiraled.” Whether or not that’s entirely true doesn’t really matter. If they hang him out to dry, my degree of respect for them will slip.

    A lot of the comments I’m reading here sound like what I heard after Billy Buck lost the series for the BoSox. Is this really comparable?

  • ipatrick

    I don’t understand why Dempster is getting the blame in all of this. News reports indicate that Cubs management kept Dempster in the loop the entire way with what they were doing, so Cubs management doesn’t appear to have done anything wrong. Meanwhile, all the news stories point to the leak about the trade coming out of Atlanta. I have seen several reports that said the trade was posted Monday as a done deal on the Braves website. So Dempster, who apparently was told about the proposed trade and thinks he has time to consider whether to accept it, suddenly starts receiving tons of text messages congratulating him on the trade. This information is not supposed to be public yet, and he hasn’t agreed to a trade. So he feels betrayed, blindsided. I don’t blame him. It looks to me like someone in the Atlanta organization screwed up. Not only was there a leak about a proposed trade, apparently someone actually posted the trade as a done deal on the Braves website. It’s not Dempster who looks bad, it’s the Braves organization. After all that, can you blame him for having second thoughts about accepting a trade to Atlanta?

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  • candy anthony wedding dresses

    I spammed.

    • TWC

      I’m sorry, I think you’re looking for the Aaron Miles thread. It’s down the hall to the left.