Jon Lester, who pitched in game conditions for the first time since August (and for the first time since his cancer battle), talked about today’s eight-pitch outing against the Twins:
“There were some nerves. I didn’t know where the first pitch was going to go, but it was a strike. … I wasn’t worried about how many pitches or innings I threw; I just wanted to throw well and move on to the next step.”
“It’s great. Just to get back and be normal again is awesome. Just to get back on the mound and throw the baseball and not worry about other things. So it’s good and I enjoyed it and, hopefully, we just build from here.”
On whether he was nervous leading up to this outing, “I tried not to think about it and treat it like a normal game, and take it from there,” he said.
On whether he was frustrated about not going beyond one inning: “No, I understand, I know that the team has my best interests at heart… I’ll get my work in one way or the other, so we’ll just take it slow and go from here.”
Asked about the strength in his legs, Lester said that it wasn’t where it should be, but that he was about 85 percent to 90 percent there.
Lester will throw next in a bullpen session on Wednesday then pitch one inning Saturday in a simulated game against Boston teammates. With a very solid starting rotation, the Red Sox don’t have to rush him.
Material from The Associated Press was used in this update