Jon Lester was traded to the Oakland A’s on Thursday after spending the first eight-plus years of his MLB career with the Boston Red Sox. Is the 30-year-old lefty moving on for good, or are the A’s just borrowing him for a few months?
There are plenty of people who believe the Red Sox traded Lester with the intention of signing him on the open market this offseason. Boston is out of contention in 2014. If they bring Lester back this winter, they essentially swapped Jonny Gomes for Cespedes straight up. Not that it means anything, but here are two of the tweets Lester favorite in the hours after he was traded.
Good luck in Oakland for 3 months, @jlester31 – thanks for 2007 + 2013, was fun watching you grow into an ace. See you on the 2015 Sox.
— Bill Simmons (@BillSimmons) July 31, 2014
Best of luck to @JLester31, you were a miracle for this team. Hope you will return.
— BrockHoltFandom (@HoltFandm) July 31, 2014
Lester probably just appreciates the kind words, but you never know. What we do know is that the A’s don’t have the money to sign Lester to the extension he is seeking. That means he is all but certain to hit the open market, and the Red Sox have plenty of cash if they want him back. Boston has been hesitant to pay that kind of money for pitching, but they could make an exception if this was the plan all along.
H/T LBS friend John F