After Theo & Co. Out-Maneuver Ben Cherington To Get Jon Lester, Red Sox Act Fast To Re-Tool Pitching Staff

Posted on 11 December 2014 by Lou

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Theo & Co. clearly got the better of Ben Cherington and the Boston Red Sox when the Chicago Cubs lured Jon Lester to the north side with their 6-Year, $155 million deal.

But the Red Sox acted quickly to re-tool their starting pitching staff that was left with just oft-injured Clay Buchholz, newly acquired Joe Kelly and a number of prospects who made their major league debuts in 2014.

The Red Sox immediately acquired their lefty to replace Lester in Wade Miley from the Arizona Diamondbacks.  They had to give up Rubby De La Rosa and Allen Webster to bring the established Miley (8-12 with a 4.34 ERA and 1.40 WHIP in 2014) to Boston.

Then the Red Sox cleared some room in its outfield for the newly acquired Hanley Ramirez by dealing Yoenes Cespedes to the Detroit Tigers to acquire the 26-year old Rick Porcello.  Porcello burst onto the scene as a 20-year old starter back in 2009 for the Detroit Tigers and has really come into his own of late.  He went 15-13 in 2014 with a 3.43 ERA and 1.23 WHIP.

Finally the Red Sox signed their former top pitching prospect Justin Masterson to a 1-year, $9.5 million free agent deal.  Masterson excelled under current Manager John Farrell’s tutelage as Red Sox pitching coach several years ago and hope he can rebound from a disappointing, injury-laden 2014 MLB season.

Kudos to the Red Sox for having a nice Plan B in place to execute once they knew they were out of the Jon Lester sweepstakes.

The Cubs have stayed the course this off-season after their acquisitions of Jon Lester, Jason Hammel and Miguel Montero.  I know people are calling for Theo & Co. to go “all-in” on 2015 after the Lester signing, but I’m all for staying patient and seeing what we have in 2015.  Let’s add a veteran bat or 2 and call it a day.  Let’s leave room for the young prospects to get some important development time at the major league level during 2015. If Javier Baez improves his plate-discipline, if Jorge Soler doesn’t have any setbacks and if Kris Bryant comes out firing on all cylinders come May 1, then who knows, maybe the Cubs do make a run.  But if not, it will still be a productive year.  A year to build on and a year to catapult the Cubs into World Series contention in 2016…

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