The post Jon Lester Red Sox


The Jon Lester saga will play out similar to a high profile divorce case with all the attendant he said and she said accusations. Some in RSN may feel like jilted lovers over Lester’s desire to enrich his portfolio and reject all the professed love he has for the Boston area. Lester could certainly make a nice down payment on whole sections of the city if he wished.

To this observer the money paid for a very good and not great pitcher was a shock. A case can certainly be made for Lester being an ace and being paid handsomely, but what he received? I wonder if this was merely a desire by Theo Epstein to do a go one up on Larry Lucchino? I’m sure Felix Hernandez is tossing around the term “renegotiate.”

The big winners are anyone that has a reasonable ability to toss a baseball. Lester has set a nice elevated bar for those in the market or to be in the market in a season or two. Scott Boras and his client, Max Scherzer, are now seeing how many zeros can be placed after the number two. Johnny Cueto knows that another season like 2014 and he can also buy a section of Boston or Los Angeles or anywhere else he lands.

Andrew Miller has set a new gold standard for a set-up pitcher coming off exactly one and one-half seasons worth of creditable work. Miller has a four-year deal and Lester’s appears to run until the next ice age rolls around. So much for the over or soon to be over 30 set. Forget the breakdowns of Cliff Lee and C.C. Sabathia.

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For the Red Sox the possible mention of “bridge” is sure to enrage the semi faithful. Bridge has the same response as a letter from the IRS. The impatience of RSN will not tolerate a wait a year for Henry Owens and the rest of the next great crowd.

The Red Sox were willing to spend 140M or so on Lester and that has to go somewhere. Maybe another terabyte for Carmen? Maybe Theo took the software to Chicago along with the gorilla suit?

Anyways, the Red Sox will no doubt take a look at the next best offering which is probably James Shields. They can spread some money for the various sloppy seconds like Justin Masterson, Ervin Santana and Brandon McCarthy just to name a few on the long list of hopefuls.

Trades have certainly been in the news with the Cincinnati Reds having an abundance of pitchers ready to cash in. The Red Sox have some trade chips such as Yoenis Cespedes who has been offered around like a keg at a frat party. Cespedes and a few others that have either little service time or a reasonable productive bat may be targeted.

The Red Sox also have that productive – at least in the magical world of projections – farm system. The price just went up. You want Owens? You get him and control him for six years. That is a huge selling point. Same with Blake Swihart and right down to Sean Coyle.

The next few weeks will show what plans the front office, working in the Fenway bunker, have developed as the fall back option. Moves will be made for the very big hole that exists in the rotation and some of the present and some of the future of the Red Sox will be elsewhere to begin 2015.