Cubs' Dempster exercises option for next season

Cubs starter Ryan Dempster has exercised his contract option for next season and will pitch for $14 million while also seeking an extension.

It came as no surprise that Dempster, who was 10-14 with a 4.80 earned-run average, would exercise the last year of his current contract signed three winters ago. That contract was valued at $52 million over four years and left the last season up to him on whether he wanted to return.

The 34-year-old Dempster is the staff veteran until new bosses Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer decide what to do with Carlos Zambrano. He just completed his fourth straight season with at least 200 innings, which marked his conversion from the closers role.

— As the Cubs continue expanding their front office, sources say they are close to adding Arizona Diamondback scout Joe Bohringer as pro scouting coordinator. He's a 1993 graduate of MIT's Sloan School of Management, and like new GM Theo Epstein believes in making decisions informed by both scouting and statistical analysis.

Phil Rogers contributed to this report

Twitter @davandyck

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