Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from pumpsie-green. Show pumpsie-green's posts

    Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    In his last three starts Lester has pitching 17.2 innings and surrendered 11 earned runs. Thats  an ERA of 5.60. Prior to that he had pitched exactly four good game this year-following a year where he pitched poorly with an ERA of 4.82. His fastball velocity is down again this year to 91.9, down from 92.0 last year, which was down from 92.6 in 2011, which is down from 93.5 in 2010. See the pattern? Once a pitcher loses velocity off his fastball it is rarely regained, unless that loss is due to injury.

    Unfortunately, he is far from out of the woods. Yes he had a fast start, but today's mediocre performance does little to inspire confidence in him. His prorated ERA for today was 4.50, which is very near the average ERA for the AL. Lester IMO is a serviceable #3 SP, but not more than that. Its certainly tempting to look at his first four games this year and get giddy about his "return to form", but his last three games clearly demonstrate that he is most certainly not out of the woods, no matter how much we all wish he were.

     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from Hfxsoxnut. Show Hfxsoxnut's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    I can't argue with most of that.  But describing him as a 'serviceable #3 SP' doesn't mean very much unless you explain what you think the typical stats for a 'serviceable #3' are. 

     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from dgalehouse. Show dgalehouse's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    In response to pumpsie-green's comment:

    In his last three starts Lester has pitching 17.2 innings and surrendered 11 earned runs. Thats  an ERA of 5.60. Prior to that he had pitched exactly four good game this year-following a year where he pitched poorly with an ERA of 4.82. His fastball velocity is down again this year to 91.9, down from 92.0 last year, which was down from 92.6 in 2011, which is down from 93.5 in 2010. See the pattern? Once a pitcher loses velocity off his fastball it is rarely regained, unless that loss is due to injury.

    Unfortunately, he is far from out of the woods. Yes he had a fast start, but today's mediocre performance does little to inspire confidence in him. His prorated ERA for today was 4.50, which is very near the average ERA for the AL. Lester IMO is a serviceable #3 SP, but not more than that. Its certainly tempting to look at his first four games this year and get giddy about his "return to form", but his last three games clearly demonstrate that he is most certainly not out of the woods, no matter how much we all wish he were.



    The truth is , Lester was staked to a three run lead , but one could not feel any confidence that he would hold it. He was done after six.  Look at the daily box scores. Some guys are pitching complete games , or eight strong innings.  Lester is a  good pitcher , but not one of the best. 

     
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from pumpsie-green. Show pumpsie-green's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    In response to Hfxsoxnut's comment:

    I can't argue with most of that.  But describing him as a 'serviceable #3 SP' doesn't mean very much unless you explain what you think the typical stats for a 'serviceable #3' are. 



    Fair enough. I am not sure how to look up the ERAs of all #3 SPs, but I looked at some of the ERAs for pitchers who play for teams who are in the middle of the ERA pack right now in the AL (hence, "serviceable"). Here are the results: 

    White Sox (5th in total ERA): #3 is Dylan Axelrod, ERA=3.60

    Yankees (6th): Hughes, ERA: 3.60

    Orioles (7th): Jason Hammel, ERA: 3.79

    Mariners (8th): Jason Saunders, ERA: 5.25

    Twins (9th): Pedro Hernandez, ERA: 4.70

    These results are as of yesterday's stats, and all these pitchers have started at least three games for their team. 

    Averaging out the ERAs provided you get an ERA of 4.19. Thats a bit optimistic IMO for Lester this year, but close. Hence, I think he is just a serviceable #3 SP, even if his reputation with the Red Sox is legendary for his performance in years past when he was actually a #1-2 SP. He is not that any more.

     
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from pumpsie-green. Show pumpsie-green's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    In response to dgalehouse's comment:

    In response to pumpsie-green's comment:

     

    In his last three starts Lester has pitching 17.2 innings and surrendered 11 earned runs. Thats  an ERA of 5.60. Prior to that he had pitched exactly four good game this year-following a year where he pitched poorly with an ERA of 4.82. His fastball velocity is down again this year to 91.9, down from 92.0 last year, which was down from 92.6 in 2011, which is down from 93.5 in 2010. See the pattern? Once a pitcher loses velocity off his fastball it is rarely regained, unless that loss is due to injury.

    Unfortunately, he is far from out of the woods. Yes he had a fast start, but today's mediocre performance does little to inspire confidence in him. His prorated ERA for today was 4.50, which is very near the average ERA for the AL. Lester IMO is a serviceable #3 SP, but not more than that. Its certainly tempting to look at his first four games this year and get giddy about his "return to form", but his last three games clearly demonstrate that he is most certainly not out of the woods, no matter how much we all wish he were.

     



    The truth is , Lester was staked to a three run lead , but one could not feel any confidence that he would hold it. He was done after six.  Look at the daily box scores. Some guys are pitching complete games , or eight strong innings.  Lester is a  good pitcher , but not one of the best. 

     



    Its entirely too easy to have your opinion of  "our" Red Sox players tainted by irrational exuberance; its a natural part of being a fan. Everyone here, or at least most everyone, WISHES Lester was a real ace and that he has turned around his dreadful performance of last year, but I say PROVE IT. With the loss of velocity he has had I cannot see him being much more than a #3-4 SP for the remainder of his career with the team.

     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from Hfxsoxnut. Show Hfxsoxnut's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    After today Lester's ERA is still only 3.30. 

     
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from pumpsie-green. Show pumpsie-green's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    In response to Hfxsoxnut's comment:

    After today Lester's ERA is still only 3.30. 



    And I hope it stays that way. But more than likely, based on what he did last year and the drop in his velocity, it will balloon.

     
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from Hfxsoxnut. Show Hfxsoxnut's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    Lester didn't get smoked today.  He made the one bad pitch that resulted in a two-run homer.  That's baseball - a better pitch there and maybe he gives up one run and gets the win.  He also struck out 7 in 6 innings.

     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from pumpsie-green. Show pumpsie-green's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    In response to Hfxsoxnut's comment:

    Lester didn't get smoked today.  He made the one bad pitch that resulted in a two-run homer.  That's baseball - a better pitch there and maybe he gives up one run and gets the win.  He also struck out 7 in 6 innings.



    Bottom line: he surrendered 3 runs in 6 innings. He DIDN'T make a better pitch. Thats maybe what separates him from becoming a #2 SP; they DO make good pitches more often. Jon Lester is a major reason why I am sticking to my prediction of 81 wins this year.

     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from dgalehouse. Show dgalehouse's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    I fail to see the point in ranking your starters 1-5.  What does it matter ?   It's not as if you can start whoever you want on a given day. They pitch in rotation.  Ideally , they all pitch well enough to give you a chance to win. We all have an idea as to who is the best , but so what ?  In the end , you want a strong five man rotation.  Designating someone as the number four or five just means that you have low expectations for him. The best pitchers will make the most money , but during the season ,  each game is equally important to your overall record. 

     

     
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from pumpsie-green. Show pumpsie-green's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    In response to dgalehouse's comment:

    I fail to see the point in ranking your starters 1-5.  What does it matter ?   It's not as if you can start whoever you want on a given day. They pitch in rotation.  Ideally , they all pitch well enough to give you a chance to win. We all have an idea as to who is the best , but so what ?  In the end , you want a strong five man rotation.  Designating someone as the number four or five just means that you have low expectations for him. The best pitchers will make the most money , but during the season ,  each game is equally important to your overall record. 

     



    When I did that analysis I took the SP who has pitched at least three games so far and who has the third best ERA among the team's SP. Thats where I think Lester will be: a third best pitcher, maybe a fourth, with an ERA around 4.2-4.3. He just isn't that good any more.

     
  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from royf19. Show royf19's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    In response to pumpsie-green's comment:

    In response to dgalehouse's comment:

     

    I fail to see the point in ranking your starters 1-5.  What does it matter ?   It's not as if you can start whoever you want on a given day. They pitch in rotation.  Ideally , they all pitch well enough to give you a chance to win. We all have an idea as to who is the best , but so what ?  In the end , you want a strong five man rotation.  Designating someone as the number four or five just means that you have low expectations for him. The best pitchers will make the most money , but during the season ,  each game is equally important to your overall record. 

     

     



    When I did that analysis I took the SP who has pitched at least three games so far and who has the third best ERA among the team's SP. Thats where I think Lester will be: a third best pitcher, maybe a fourth, with an ERA around 4.2-4.3. He just isn't that good any more.

     




    Fourth? Who is going to have a better ERA than Lester? MAYBE Dempster, but I doubt it. And while I think Lackey will have a decent year his ERA won't be lower than Lester's and certainly not Doubrant.

    Lester remains a solid No. 2 for the Sox and I would be surprised if he pitches ace-like as the season goes on.

    Lester always has been off and on early in the season. In 2010, he had three bad starts before going on a roll. In 2011, he had bad opening start then went on a roll.

    He needs to run off some good starts have a couple of relatively shaky starts, but I think he still can be a top of a rotation starter.

     
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from pumpsie-green. Show pumpsie-green's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    In response to royf19's comment:

    In response to pumpsie-green's comment:

     

    In response to dgalehouse's comment:

     

    I fail to see the point in ranking your starters 1-5.  What does it matter ?   It's not as if you can start whoever you want on a given day. They pitch in rotation.  Ideally , they all pitch well enough to give you a chance to win. We all have an idea as to who is the best , but so what ?  In the end , you want a strong five man rotation.  Designating someone as the number four or five just means that you have low expectations for him. The best pitchers will make the most money , but during the season ,  each game is equally important to your overall record. 

     

     



    When I did that analysis I took the SP who has pitched at least three games so far and who has the third best ERA among the team's SP. Thats where I think Lester will be: a third best pitcher, maybe a fourth, with an ERA around 4.2-4.3. He just isn't that good any more.

     

     




    Fourth? Who is going to have a better ERA than Lester? MAYBE Dempster, but I doubt it. And while I think Lackey will have a decent year his ERA won't be lower than Lester's and certainly not Doubrant.

     

    Lester remains a solid No. 2 for the Sox and I would be surprised if he pitches ace-like as the season goes on.

    Lester always has been off and on early in the season. In 2010, he had three bad starts before going on a roll. In 2011, he had bad opening start then went on a roll.

    He needs to run off some good starts have a couple of relatively shaky starts, but I think he still can be a top of a rotation starter.



    I am talking about comparing him to #3 and 4 SP on all teams, not just ours. I disagree that he can become a top of the rotation SP again. But your guess is as good as mine.

     
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  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from Drewski5. Show Drewski5's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    In response to pumpsie-green's comment:


    I am talking about comparing him to #3 and 4 SP on all teams, not just ours. I disagree that he can become a top of the rotation SP again. But your guess is as good as mine.



    I disagree.  Ive seen starts this year when he has looked like his old self.  When he is throwing his fastball, cutter, curveball, changeup for strikes, he is a top of the rotation guy.

    Not saying that he WILL be top of the roto or that he's all the way back, just saying that I still think he can.

     
  16. You have chosen to ignore posts from BosoxJoe5. Show BosoxJoe5's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    In response to pumpsie-green's comment:

    In his last three starts Lester has pitching 17.2 innings and surrendered 11 earned runs. Thats  an ERA of 5.60. Prior to that he had pitched exactly four good game this year-following a year where he pitched poorly with an ERA of 4.82. His fastball velocity is down again this year to 91.9, down from 92.0 last year, which was down from 92.6 in 2011, which is down from 93.5 in 2010. See the pattern? Once a pitcher loses velocity off his fastball it is rarely regained, unless that loss is due to injury.

    Unfortunately, he is far from out of the woods. Yes he had a fast start, but today's mediocre performance does little to inspire confidence in him. His prorated ERA for today was 4.50, which is very near the average ERA for the AL. Lester IMO is a serviceable #3 SP, but not more than that. Its certainly tempting to look at his first four games this year and get giddy about his "return to form", but his last three games clearly demonstrate that he is most certainly not out of the woods, no matter how much we all wish he were.



    Yesterday was a positive sign. He ended his tailspin. Lets see what he does next start.

     
  17. You have chosen to ignore posts from BosoxJoe5. Show BosoxJoe5's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    In response to pumpsie-green's comment:

    In response to Hfxsoxnut's comment:

     

    I can't argue with most of that.  But describing him as a 'serviceable #3 SP' doesn't mean very much unless you explain what you think the typical stats for a 'serviceable #3' are. 

     



    Fair enough. I am not sure how to look up the ERAs of all #3 SPs, but I looked at some of the ERAs for pitchers who play for teams who are in the middle of the ERA pack right now in the AL (hence, "serviceable"). Here are the results: 

     

    White Sox (5th in total ERA): #3 is Dylan Axelrod, ERA=3.60

    Yankees (6th): Hughes, ERA: 3.60

    Orioles (7th): Jason Hammel, ERA: 3.79

    Mariners (8th): Jason Saunders, ERA: 5.25

    Twins (9th): Pedro Hernandez, ERA: 4.70

    These results are as of yesterday's stats, and all these pitchers have started at least three games for their team. 

    Averaging out the ERAs provided you get an ERA of 4.19. Thats a bit optimistic IMO for Lester this year, but close. Hence, I think he is just a serviceable #3 SP, even if his reputation with the Red Sox is legendary for his performance in years past when he was actually a #1-2 SP. He is not that any more.



    Based on those stats Lester would be a number two.

     
  18. You have chosen to ignore posts from BosoxJoe5. Show BosoxJoe5's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    In response to pumpsie-green's comment:

    In response to dgalehouse's comment:

     

    I fail to see the point in ranking your starters 1-5.  What does it matter ?   It's not as if you can start whoever you want on a given day. They pitch in rotation.  Ideally , they all pitch well enough to give you a chance to win. We all have an idea as to who is the best , but so what ?  In the end , you want a strong five man rotation.  Designating someone as the number four or five just means that you have low expectations for him. The best pitchers will make the most money , but during the season ,  each game is equally important to your overall record. 

     

     



    When I did that analysis I took the SP who has pitched at least three games so far and who has the third best ERA among the team's SP. Thats where I think Lester will be: a third best pitcher, maybe a fourth, with an ERA around 4.2-4.3. He just isn't that good any more.

     



    This is very illogical.

     
  19. You have chosen to ignore posts from Drewski5. Show Drewski5's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    I agree w/ BoSox...i think 4.2 in the AL East is an okay #2.  If this is Lester's downside, we are in good shape.

     
  20. You have chosen to ignore posts from SpacemanEephus. Show SpacemanEephus's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    Just a thought on career patterns to date as we reduce him to a bottom of the rotation barely-serviceable starter:  Lester has had invariable slow starts every year he has pitched.  To me, the fact that he is through the first month with one poor and one grind-it-out start mixed in with a handful of very solid ones bodes well.  With the exception of last year, he hits his stride in the summer.  So, I am thinking, since he seems to have found that stride a little earlier this year, he is bound for a very good year, assuming health.

     
  21. You have chosen to ignore posts from pumpsie-green. Show pumpsie-green's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    In response to BosoxJoe5's comment:

    In response to pumpsie-green's comment:

     

    In his last three starts Lester has pitching 17.2 innings and surrendered 11 earned runs. Thats  an ERA of 5.60. Prior to that he had pitched exactly four good game this year-following a year where he pitched poorly with an ERA of 4.82. His fastball velocity is down again this year to 91.9, down from 92.0 last year, which was down from 92.6 in 2011, which is down from 93.5 in 2010. See the pattern? Once a pitcher loses velocity off his fastball it is rarely regained, unless that loss is due to injury.

    Unfortunately, he is far from out of the woods. Yes he had a fast start, but today's mediocre performance does little to inspire confidence in him. His prorated ERA for today was 4.50, which is very near the average ERA for the AL. Lester IMO is a serviceable #3 SP, but not more than that. Its certainly tempting to look at his first four games this year and get giddy about his "return to form", but his last three games clearly demonstrate that he is most certainly not out of the woods, no matter how much we all wish he were.

     



    Yesterday was a positive sign. He ended his tailspin. Lets see what he does next start.

     



    I don't think that surrendering three earned runs in six innings is a "positive sign". If he did that all year his ERA would be 4.50. In games like that, where you are facing a high quality SP from the other team, you have to limit the opposition to a run or two max. At least thats what #1 pitchers do. Lester failed to do that. Darvish went 7 yesterday surrendering the same number of runs; that extra inning was big. Had Lester done that we would not have had to use Mortensen in the ninth.

     
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  23. You have chosen to ignore posts from crazyworldoftroybrown. Show crazyworldoftroybrown's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    Good Pitchers end losing streaks.

     
  24. You have chosen to ignore posts from pumpsie-green. Show pumpsie-green's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    In response to Drewski5's comment:

    I agree w/ BoSox...i think 4.2 in the AL East is an okay #2.  If this is Lester's downside, we are in good shape.




    I do not agree that 4.20 is good enough to be an "okay #2" in the ALE. That would place him as the fourth best #2 in the ALE right now. Here are the ERAs of the #2 SPs in the ALE:

    NYY (Sabathia): 3.31, Rays (Cobb): 2.79, Orioles (Chen): 3.50, and Jays (Morrow): 4.69.

    As you can see, if Lester is at 4.20 he would be much worse than than most of our ALE competition. I hope I am wrong about Lester's upside. I see him more as a #3 at best.

     
  25. You have chosen to ignore posts from mrmojo1120. Show mrmojo1120's posts

    Re: Jon Lester is not out of the woods just yet

    Maybe he should try a spitter like Buchholz.

    JK

     
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