Fort Myers, Fla. • Boston Red Sox pitcher Ryan Dempster says he's taking this season off but is leaving open the possibility of playing in 2015.
The 36-year-old right-hander said Sunday he is stepping away for physical reasons and to spend more time with his family.
"I had an incredible run, a chance to play 16 years in the major leagues and be around a lot of great teammates, made a lot of good friendships, great friendships," Dempster said in a surprise announcement one day before the first formal spring training workout for pitchers and catchers. "I'm totally comfortable with it. I'm at peace with my decision."