posted at 7/14/2013 11:15 AM EDT
In response to maxbialystock's comment:
Southpaw, you seem to be backing off your defense of Lester. I believe he will stay because he still has a decent assortment of pitches and only needs better command of them. That sounds odd talking about a starter pushing 30, but last night was a perfect example. On an 0-2 count he absolutely grooved a fastball in the geometric center of the strike zone, and it was promptly jerked into the left field stands.
No, Im not backing off my defense of Lester, although after reading it, it would appear that way. Im just seeing some possibilites and trying to be realistic on all sides. I realize what hes going through now and dont try to sugarcoat it. I also realize that baseball is a game of adjustments and when a pitcher approaches 30yrs old after 7+ MLB years 1250 IP and about 22,000+ pitches, issues can arise. Hes lost only 1MPH in the last 3 years off his FB. His cutter isnt nearly as effective as it was, but his change up looks great and hes trying to make subtle adjustments, whether it be with his glove or changing sides on the rubber. These adjustment usually take some time.
There is still the posibility he puts things together and becomes a solid consistent pitcher again, as well as remaining like a #3 pitcher, like last nights performance. Some team might also offer a nice package for Lester+ this offseason that Ben would HAVE to consider. I absolutely dont think that they try to move him because they know hes a good smart pitcher who has 4 solid pitches. He just needs to adjust his approach.
A lot of the time when I post, my opinion is in there but also the possibilities that could happen are mixed in too. Sometimes I dont word things correctly and it sounds like those other possibilites ARE my opinions. So.....
I think The Sox will pick up Lesters option and for now they believe, like I do, that he will come out the other side as a solid consistent pitcher again. Hes got the stuff, the smarts and the ability. Hes always been a pitcher who goes about 7IP, starts 33+ games every year with 200+K's and 200+ IP every year. He can still win 15 games, IMHO, and the Sox wont give up on him as easily as some here have.