This weekend series with the Yankees sure doesn’t feel like the rivalry it once was. The Sox are in last place and the Yankees are coasting to another Division Crown. Even if the Sox sweep, it won’t put a dent in the Yankees lead. Which leads me to the question, why is Jon Lester pitching on Saturday? What? His ERA isn’t high enough yet?
I will give Theo Epstein and Terry Francona the nod over Ben Cherington and Bobby Valentine when it comes to dealing with struggling players. How often the past few years did you see a pitcher like Josh Beckett or Clay Buchholz comes up with a mystery ailment or injury? Next thing you know they miss a start or two so they can get their head back in the game. That is what should happen to Lester. I have two trains of thought when it comes to the struggling Lester.
One-if I was Bobby V, I would tell Lester prior to the game that the bullpen has been over used and are in dire need of rest. What that means is I need you to go out and pitch seven innings today and I won’t make a pitching change until the eighth inning regardless of the score or how many pitches you throw. If you give up 40 runs or throw 200 pitches so be it. What’s the difference if we are behind 11-0 or 40-0? A loss is a loss. I’m tired of watching Lester pitch 3-4 innings and that’s it. Who cares if his arm falls off? Enough is enough, suck it up. Unrealistic? Definitely, in this day and age of the overpaid spoiled superstar, Valentine would lose his job over it. But, wouldn’t you wish he had the guts to do it?
Two-put Lester on the DL. Let him rest for a couple weeks, then send him to Pawtucket for a few rehab starts. That’s what Theo would do if he was still here. Let Franklin Morales take his spot in the rotation for a few weeks. He can’t do much worst. Hell, I would even slot Andrew Miller as the starter Saturday before I would hand the ball to Lester.
Haven’t we been embarrassed enough by the Yankees already this year? Why give them a day to laugh at our so called Ace.