Mar 11, 2013; Jupiter, FL, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Jon Lester (31) throws agaisnt the Miami Marlins during a spring training game at Roger Dean Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Red Sox Regulars Dominate Rays 5-1

Jon Lester pitched six perfect innings and Jonny Gomes went 3-3 with 4RBI as the Red Sox, with basically their opening day lineup and pitcher on the field dominated the Tampa Bay Rays 5-1.

Lester threw 79 pitches, 53 for strikes and has a 0.90 ERA this spring. Will Middlebrooks also chipped in with a nice 2-3 day with a pair of doubles.  It was all, hopefully, a preview of things to come.

Just as my colleague Aidan Flynn writes a column indicating spring training stats mean nothing, the Sox proceed to go out and deliver a performance that has to give them a lot of confidence going into the season.

I disagree with Aidan that spring training performance is meaningless. Especially with a Red Sox club that has had a fragile psyche since the end of 2011.

Anything the Sox can do to get themselves in a good frame of mind for the start of the season is important. Boston cannot afford to get off to another bad start. They must start well for both their own sanity and that of the fans.

Although there is still a lot of spring training left, having Lester perform this way is huge. He is a guy that is going to set the tone this year.

For him to be this crisp this soon is a big deal and I don’t think you can just dismiss his good spring and say let’s see what he does when the bell rings.

Pitching is all about building blocks and Lester has had several this spring. There’s no reason why it shouldn’t bode well for him in April.

Fans have been waiting to see the good Lester return to a Red Sox uniform. He most certainly has appeared in Fort Myers. It now looks like he’s back and this can only be good news.

The Red Sox are now 13-9 this spring and will travel to Bradeton to face the Pirates today at 1:05.

Tags: Boston Red Sox Jon Lester

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