Jon Lester came into spring training this season for the Boston Red Sox on a mission.
Lester had the worst year of his career in 2012 with a 9-14 record for Boston and a 4.82 ERA. The Red Sox ace must know that he can’t be that bad again in 2013 if the team have any hopes to getting back to the playoffs. I really believe that the biggest problem last year wasn’t actually Lester but more Bobby Valentine, who is now gone as the manager, and I really think that will allow the left-hander to get back to his winning ways.
The 29-year old had won 15 or more games in four straight seasons before the 2012 campaign. There was an obvious disconnect last season between Valentine and the players in Boston which resulted in players not playing to their ability. That could just be a bad excuse for Lester, but the decision to bring former pitching coach John Farrell back to the team as manager will help out Lester a lot.
Lester has been much better in spring training this year, giving up no runs and just one hit in five innings so far. That has to be a beginning of something for the Red Sox, because there is nowhere to go but up for the southpaw after last season
I wouldn’t be surprised at all if Lester finishes this season with at least 15 wins and continues that trend for a number of years to come. Lester’s biggest problem has now been fixed and that can only turn Lester back into the pitcher he was for a long time.