Jon Lester- A Lesson to be Learned

By Editorial Staff

First I tried to tell Terry Francona and now it is Jon Lester‘s turn to be the recipient of my “with great powers. comes great responsibility” quote from none other then Spiderman.  Don’t get me wrong, I think Lester is pitching great, but not great enough.  When he was dubbed opening day starter and Ace of this staff, that just wasn’t an appointment, it comes with  huge responsibilities.  He said he was humbled and honored for such a distinction, but it comes with a heavy burden.  He is expected to win every night out, period.  Not every relief pitcher can be a closer and  not every starter can be an Ace.  I do think Lester is an Ace, but he better get used to facing every other teams Ace’s in the process.  Who would you rather pitch against, A.J. Burnett or C.C. Sabathia?   Odds are the days of Lester facing off against the weaker Burnett are behind him.

Lester is going to be going Mano a Mano against the likes of: Felix Hernandez, Jered Weaver, C.C. Sabathia, (although the Yankees are very good at changing their rotation, so Sabathia doesn’t always face the  other teams ace), C.J. Wilson, Trevor Cahill, Fausto Carmona and David Price.  You see where this is going, don’t you?  No easy task, certainly not one you would want to hand Daisuke Matsuzaka any time soon.  Is it?

The last two games are perfect examples, first a 1-0 loss to Cleveland and a 3-2 loss last night.  There will be no more free passes in any of his starts.  As good as Lester was those nights , he just wasn’t good enough.  He is the best man for the job in this rotation, that is why it is so important that he always goes to the mound with a plan in place for each and every batter he is facing that night.

Lester needs to get his ERA down into the low 2’s to win.  He can ill afford a 3 run inning when facing a David Price.  He must match each opponent pitch by pitch.  In his heyday, that’s what Josh Beckett did.  He would go out there and beat a David Price or a C.C. Sabathia 1-0 or 2-1.  This torch has been passed and now it is up to Lester to find away to dig deep down and shut the other team down completely.

What did Apollo Creed say to Rocky when fighting Clubber Lang?  “He’s just a man, be more man than him!!!”  Lester is one of the best pitchers in all of baseball and if there was ever a time to take his game up a notch , it is now.

Jon Lester is a winner and I would give him the ball every day of the week and twice on Sunday.  Lets hope his winning ways comes before it’s too late.  But, losing is losing whether it is 16-5 or 3-2.  He needs to be the stopper, the one who stops a losing streak and starts a winning streak.   We don’t need to now hold our collective breathes hoping that John Lackey can put up a “W.”   Now do we?

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