Ryan Dempster and Mike Quade are friends again


Ryan Dempster was not happy about Cubs manager Mike Quade pulling him from Saturday’s start after the fifth inning and the two had an extended screaming match, but it sounds like they’ve patched things up.

Here’s what Quade told Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune:

Everything is fantastic. I was going to tell you about the conversation I had with my girlfriend last night too, but that’s off limits as well. That’s part of being at this level, not just in this town. And it’s OK.

Dempster declined to comment yesterday and Sullivan notes that he was “unapologetic” when talking previously about the incident, but he’s scheduled to start tomorrow and Quade at least seems to be over it.

Adding to the drama is that Dempster was one of Quade’s biggest supporters when the Cubs were deciding whether or not to make him the full-time manager, and with the team already out of contention at 37-56 and Quade under fire it’d be nice to have Dempster back on his side again. He might have bigger problems, after all.

Ryan Zimmerman’s spring training has been . . . weird

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Nationals first baseman Ryan Zimmerman has played in exactly one Grapefruit league game this year, and that was way back on March 2. Since then he has been totally absent from the Nats’ big league spring games, playing instead on the back fields in sim games and in minor league contests.

While that’s not an unusual course of action for an injured or rehabbing player, both Zimmerman and the Nationals insist that there is nothing wrong with him. Per this report from MASN’s Mark Zuckerman, they’re saying that Zimmerman “simply prefers to get his work done in the more controlled environment of minor league games, where the rules are lax.” He doesn’t have to dive for balls, he can lead off every inning, etc. Manager Dave Martinez says Zimmerman simply doesn’t like the usual spring training grind and that this is working for him so he’s fine with it too.

Are you buyin’ that? Not sure I’m buyin’ that.

I suppose weirder things have happened. The Minnesota Twins once let Jack Morris go back to his farm in between starts rather than stay with the club. Other accommodations have been made for veterans, especially in spring training. But this is way more in keeping with a team hiding an injury. Though I have no idea why the Nats would choose to hide an injury to Zimmerman. They’ve talked at length about Daniel Murphy‘s knees and Adam Eaton‘s seemingly never-ending rehab. If Zimmerman has some aches and pains, you’d think they’d talk about it.

On the other hand, if this is a legit story and it is simply an accommodation for a veteran who doesn’t like the normal spring training grind, look for Zimmerman to be a trailblazer, because there are a LOT of dudes who hate spring training too and would love to change things up like this.