It’s no secret: Since Theo Epstein went on a shopping spree overspending on Carl Crawford, and Adrian Gonzalez after the 2011 season, the Red Sox have been hesitant to give any players a long term deal. It’s a bit understandable because of the situation the Red Sox were in until the Dodgers bailed them out, but if there’s anybody worth giving out a large contract to, it’s Jon Lester.
We’ve heard about it all season long. The Red Sox went to Lester, low-balled him, and negotiations went nowhere. According to reports, Lester wants a guaranteed 6 years from the Red Sox. By the time that contract were to end, Lester would be 36 years old. It’s old for a baseball player, but Lester has never had any major injuries before that have caused him to miss much time.
In parts of 9 seasons, Lester has 110 career wins, and his worst year was the dreadful Bobby Valentine year of 2012 when he only had 9 wins. Sure that year he showed his frustration and didn’t become the stopper that a club needs, but it’s hard to fault him because he had a clown as a manager.
I’ve also heard fans and experts talk about the Red Sox trading Lester this week, or letting him walk after the year and signing Max Scherzer. Scherzer has told the Tigers he is going to test the Free Agent market, but it just doesn’t make sense for the Red Sox to go with Scherzer over Lester. The two aces are the same age, and yes Scherzer has won a Cy Young award, but Lester has proven he has what it takes to play in the AL East, which up until this season, was the toughest division to pitch in.
If Lester wants the 6 years, Cherington needs to buck up and give him that deal. Sure maybe those final two years will be a bust, but it’s the price you need to pay to get a great pitcher in his prime. You see the Yankees doing it all the time with guys like Jacoby Ellsbury, and that’s not a good thing to constantly do, but with a pitcher as special as Lester, you have got to pay that price.
The theory that Lester will be traded for some prospects by the trading deadline and then sign with the Red Sox after the season is absolutely LUDICROUS!! It’s like a couple who is fighting and somebody is leaving the house: IF YOU LEAVE, THAT’S IT. THERE’S NO COMING BACK!
If Cherington does trade Lester, all hope with Lester on the Red Sox in the future is over, and the rebuild will offically begin for the franchise.