Ace starting pitcher Jon Lester is due to be a free agent at season’s end. The Boston Red Sox would like to lock him up to an extension to avoid just such a situation and keep him in Boston long term, though the intensity of those extension talks waned in recent weeks.
When the two sides did decide to table talks recently, you wondered if Lester would be headed for a loaded free agent class that includes Max Scherzer, James Shields, and Justin Masterson. And while that still might be the outcome, the Red Sox will apparently continue their efforts to sign him to an extension before he hits free agency.
According to Pete Abraham of the Boston Globe.
Farrell on Lester talks: “Every effort is going to be made to make sure that Jon remains in #RedSox uniform. We’re hopeful that takes place”
— Pete Abraham (@PeteAbe) April 22, 2014
The feeling is mutual when it comes to a desire to keep Lester in Boston. If a deal were to get done, it would be interesting to see the amount on the deal relative to what a left-handed top-of-the-rotation starter would command on the market. Lester has indicated a willingness to take a hometown discount to stay in Boston, and the Red Sox would be wise to try and capitalize on that before the season ends.