In response to royf19's comment:
In response to SonicsMonksLyresVicars's comment:
In response to georom4's comment:
bottom line is that it has been a some time since lester, clay, and lackey have been top of the rotation pitchers...if they can do it this year, the sox have a chance - like slots however, how often do you get three lemons to match up and pay off?
I think that's a little bit harsh:
- Buch, 28, has pitched very well for the last three years barring the first half of 2012 when recovering from a back injury;
- Lester, 29, has pitched very well for the last 5 years barring Sep 11 - Sep 12...who knows why?;
- Lackey, 33, was very effective for 5 years through 2009. Obviously had elbow issues as evidenced by the specific TJ clause in his contract....then was poor in 2010, historically terrible in 2011 and missed all of 2012.
Is it reasonable to assume that all 3 will revert to their career norms/highs? No, too many variables as with any pitcher. But I don't think Buch or Lester returning to strong nbr 2 starters or Lackey to a decent nbr 4 is a pipe dream.
Good post, but let me add this.
Lester was good for ALL of 2011 except for two starts in September. People should look it up. In four of his six starts he was good to excellent. He was BAD -- HORRIBLE -- in just two starts.
Lackey was better in 2010 than he is given credit for. He was very good the last two or three months of the season. Overall, he had just two fewer good starts than Lester -- (starts where their ERAs for the start was under 4.00). The difference in their ERAs was Lackey's ERA in his bad starts was a bit higher than Lester's, and Lester was more dominant in his good starts than Lackey was.
For Buchholz, it wasn't the first half of 2012 when he struggled, it was just his first six starts. From May 11 through the end of the year, he posted a 3.62 ERA. I'll glad take that from his this year for the entire year, although he is very capable of being better.
Those were two horrible starts in critical games where we expected Lester to step up and stop the bleeding. Up to that point, I thought he might be a big game pitcher and maybe even an ace. Lester was the last hope at that point for an ailing staff, and he didn't deliver. If the Red Sox are going to be winners again, key players need to step up when it counts most.