Jon Heyman, baseball insider for CBSSports.com, joined 98.5 The Sports Hub on the Gresh & Zo Show to discuss Jon Lester’s possible destinations.
Heyman said that of all the teams being thrown around with Lester’s name, “the Cubs, the Red Sox, and the Giants appear to be the most likely. I think anybody else at this point would be an upset.”
He said as for the actual offers from these teams, “at some point the Cubs are believed to have offered six years, $138 million, and I think the Red Sox signaled a willingness — I’ll put it that way — to offer $130 million.”
Heyman said he thinks that these are just opening offers but that mainly these numbers and these teams are going to be the only ones in the picture.
Dan Shaughnessy was also in studio and asked Heyman what he thought might be the limit for what teams are willing to offer Lester.
“I think we’ll hit 150 (million). You never know in free agency what some would get, but I think he’s probably a $25 million a year pitcher at this point,” Heyman replied.
Shaughnessy then asked if Heyman still thinks the Yankees remain out of contention for Lester
“I think that they are thinking about Max Scherzer pretty hard, I think that’s the guy they are thinking about,” Heyman said of the Yankees. “It is something they are considering at the ownership level.”
Scott Zolak then asked if the number is ultimately $150 million, and the Red Sox tap out at $130 million, how bad would it look? Heyman said that they wouldn’t look terrible and that there other options for them even if they don’t land Lester.
“They need to get an ace pitcher though, and they understand that, so one way or another they need to come up with somebody,” Heyman said.
As for other options if the Red Sox do not get Lester, Heyman says that Jeff Samardzija would be “a rental picture at this point” and that he would not be worth trading someone like Xander Bogaerts to bring in a pitcher for one year. Even if the Red Sox land Lester, Heyman said that Samardzija could be a great second pitcher to add to the rotation.
“I think the Red Sox need to get two very good pitchers right now,” Heyman said, adding that they are all in this year and “I think they are very good at the free-agent game,” so it would be hard to say they won’t go after as many pieces as possible.
As for other moves Heyman thinks that “[Allen] Craig and [Yoenis] Cespedes, two of the pickups from the middle of last year, will be traded.” This means that the Red Sox are really trying to go all in this year. Whatever they can do to help their team, they will do.
Listen to the entire interview below:
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