Say hey, baseball: Jon Lester’s decision has been delayed
Your Friday morning look at the game includes the Dodgers changing Lester’s schedule, Chase Headley’s mystery offer, and what are the Braves even doing?
Listen, we know it’s tough to catch up on everything happening in the baseball world each morning. There are all kinds of stories, rumors, game coverage, and Vines of dudes getting hit in the beans every day, and trying to find all of it while on your way to work or sitting at your desk isn’t easy. It’s okay, though, we’re going to do the heavy lifting for you each morning, and find the things you need to see from within the SB Nation baseball network as well as from elsewhere. Please hold your applause until the end.
This week has just been full of Jon Lester reveals. First, we got word of the offers that Lester had been receiving: The Cubs led the way at $138 million, with the Red Sox willing to go to at least $130 million. No one knows the Giants’ offer yet, but the most recent discussions said they were “all in” on Lester, so from the sounds of it they’re willing to shell out the same kind of offers we’re all under the impression the Sox and Cubs will. The expectation was that Lester would make a decision among these three teams by the end of this week, before the winter meetings begin, and that familiarity and a level of comfort was going to play into the decision.
Then word of a mystery team arrived, and that team turned out to be the Dodgers. The Dodgers have more money than all three of these teams, and they have plenty of former Red Sox officials working for them, ones Lester is familiar with. He has old teammates in Los Angeles as well, and they’re built to win: suddenly the whole picture has been muddied. Ken Rosenthal reported on Thursday night that Lester’s decision is no longer expected before the meetings, which just makes it sound as if the Dodgers are as legitimate a threat as everyone believed they could be.
If you needed further confirmation that the Dodgers are serious in their pursuit of Lester, the fact they’re discussing sending Matt Kemp to the Padres might just be it. Kemp is still owed $107 million over the next five years, the Dodgers have an outfield logjam, and Lester is going to cost even more than that per year.
If the Dodgers do sign Lester, what are the Red Sox to do then? There are a number of plans to follow-up on, none of them as perfect as just handing Lester large checks for six years, but a few of them should do just fine with the offense Boston has put together.
- What in the world are the Braves doing, trading Jason Heyward, taking calls for Justin Upton, and then signing Nick Markakis to a four-year deal?
- It’s not just national coverage that’s confused about this, either, as our friends at Talking Chop think this signing goes against the Braves long-term strategy as well.
- The Orioles are just concerned about who is going to replace Markakis in Baltimore. Could it be someone from outside the organization, someone who might cost even more?
- Speaking of cost, reliever Andrew Miller is probably going to pull in similar money to Markakis. The thing is, he should.
- The Marlinsare reportedly interested in Chase Headley, but they’re not the ones who offered him a four-year, $65 million deal. You know what that means: MYSTERY TEAM!
- If you need some educating on what terms like mystery team mean as we head into the winter meetings, do we have the two-minute video for you.
- The Royals were in the World Series last year and could still be good in the future, but hey, let’s see what would happen if they went full on Tobias Fünke with their roster to rebuild.
- The Cubs revealed visuals of their plans for outfield renovation, giant scoreboard that will drive Wrigley’s neighbors crazy included.
- The Mariners might be better off signing Melky Cabrera for just money rather than shipping off prospects for a rental outfielder.
- Now that the Blue Jays have Michael Saunders, they have an outfield! It can be improved upon, sure, but if for some reason the season decides to start tomorrow instead of in April, the Jays are good to go.
- You should probably read this account of Cuban-born Yoan Moncada and his legal exit from his homeland. And not just for the Scott Boras quotes.