Are you sure about that?
Marcum is another pitcher I'd do 3 years for, and considering his age you can do a more balanced contract and still come out in good shape, but Dempster is the better pitcher right now.
Marcum: last 3 years: 3.62 ERA. 7.5/2.4 K/BB 1.179 WHIP 30 years old
Dempster last 3 years: 4.04 ERA 8.4/3.4 K/BB 1.327 WHIP 35 years old
Marcum last 3 years: WAR 3.8/2.9/1.3
Dempster last 3 years: WAR 2.4/0.5/3.6
Which is these two pitchers looks more like a "decline phase" pitcher now? But when I talk about a pitcher being better right now, I', more concerned about what kind of season they're directly coming off of rather than averaging the prior three. But one of the things I probably should have said was "Dempster is a better pitcher for the Twins
right now", in part because I see him as being more likely to pitch 200 innings at the top end of the rotation which is sorely needed.
Dempster's 3-year averages are pulled down by 2 really good years sandwiched around 1 bad one. Marcum's averages are pretty even: he is who is he. I like both pitchers for the Twins, but Dempster's desire for a 3rd year might make him a viable option with a front-loaded contract that helps smooth the Twins payroll situation and stay reasonable. Marcum may be looking for 4 or 5 years at bigger money.