PHOENIX (AP) — Ryan Dempster figured once through the order against a division rival was enough.
Dempster pitched three scoreless innings and the Chicago Cubs beat a Milwaukee Brewers split-squad 6-1 on Saturday afternoon.
“I’m going to face those guys a lot during the year,” said Dempster, who worked in the bullpen after leaving the mound. “There’s no sense facing them more than I had to.”
The right-hander allowed two hits and walked two in his second spring start, but he said the results he’s looking for aren’t found on the scoreboard.
“Results are where I throw the pitch,” he said. “That’s what I’m trying to do, execute my pitches.”
Dempster was 0-2 with a 4.24 ERA in three starts against the NL Central champion Brewers last season. He was 10-14 with a 4.80 ERA overall in one of his worst seasons since joining the Cubs in 2004.
Chris Narveson pitched 3 2-3 innings in the longest outing by a Brewers pitcher this spring. Narveson allowed two hits, though the second was a wind-aided home run to left field by Starlin Castro.
“It’s so hit or miss out here with all the elements,” Narveson said. “There have been a couple of springs where I thought I threw the ball well and others when I thought I threw well but gave up a bunch of runs.”
Narveson threw two perfect innings against San Francisco in his previous spring start. The left-hander went 11-8 with a 4.45 ERA in 28 starts and 30 appearances for Milwaukee last season.
“I’ve still got four or five more starts,” Narveson said. “I’m just trying to get my pitch count up and get ready for the season.”
Castro’s first spring homer gave the Cubs a 1-0 lead in the fourth, and Chicago added another run in the fifth when Darwin Barney tripled in Ian Stewart.
Alex Gonzalez homered in the seventh for Milwaukee.
NOTES: Brewers 3B Aramis Ramirez’s Twitter-advertised plan to bunt the first pitch from Dempster didn’t come to fruition. Dempster started his former teammate with a fastball at his helmet before getting Ramirez to ground into a double play to end the first. “That would have been a tough pitch to bunt,” Dempster said. . Brewers closer John Axford pitched a perfect sixth, striking out two. Axford had allowed a run and three hits in two innings entering the game. . Stewart finished 2 for 3. . Brewers LF Logan Schafer went 3 for 3 and is 6 for 11 this spring.
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