In Search of an Ace

With Jon Lester’s latest clunker, I think it is time to stop considering him the staff ace. In fact, he might be the worst starter on the Red Sox right now.

Buchholz, Lackey, Dempster and Doubront all have better ERA’s than Lester and despite a great April, Lester has been bad the last 2 seasons.

With a team option for 2014, the Red Sox have a decision to make on Lester. They can keep him this year and next, they can keep him for this year and let him walk, they can keep him this year and trade him in the off-season or they can deal him this year. Because of his early career success, I think Lester has some decent trade value but if he finishes up this season the way he is pitching now, he won’t.

As for who would fill in for Lester should be be moved, well, Allan Webster isn’t lighting the world on fire but a combination of Alfredo Aceves and Franklin Morales might be just as good as Lester.

Falling back on old timey visual evidence, Lester seems relatively indifferent about his pitching performances. After Monday night’s disaster he told the media he felt he pitched much better than the results suggested. If 9 hits, 2 walks and 5 earned runs in 5 innings has enough wiggle room to be considered a better outing than it appears well, ok then.

Me? I trade Lester and get as much as I can for him. He seems to have almost completely morphed himself into Josh Beckett, only with better health. I know the Red Sox are in the thick of it and are on target to make the playoffs (albeit with a ton of baseball left) but Lester isn’t who he once was and the sooner Boston recognizes that, the better. He isn’t pitching well and will have trouble making the playoff roster if he continues this way.

The Boston Bruins just made a bold trade in dealing Tyler Seguin and the Boston Celtics just made two bold moves in dealing Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce and by signing Brad Stevens as coach (I won’t discuss the Patriots here…), perhaps it’s time for the Red Sox to do something bold as well.