Jon Lester trade rumors are really picking up steam this week. The Boston Red Sox are to blame for the surge in Jon Lester trade discussion, especially after the franchise reportedly made their ace available on the market. According to a report from The Sporting News on Monday night (July 28), this came about when the team saw his contract demands. The leaks of this contract proposal might come from areas other than the organization though.
It hasn't helped matters that Lester is publicly talking about his willingness to be dealt by the team and then possibly return as a free agent in the offseason. The problem with that idea (for the Red Sox), is that the team acquiring him would then get draft compensation in return. As it stands, though, if he walks away in free agency, the Red Sox will have missed out on a golden opportunity to bring back several young players that could help rebuild their minor league system.
It surprises no baseball fan that one of the teams surfacing in the Jon Lester trade rumors is the Seattle Mariners. The Mariners get linked to every elite starting pitcher that becomes available on the market and that includes David Price. General manager Jack Zduriencik has reportedly made his interest known, but it is not clear at all whether discussions have advanced between the two teams. Other franchises also likely interested are the Baltimore Orioles and LA Dodgers.
During the 2014 MLB season, Jon Lester has posted a 10-7 record with a 2.52 ERA and 1.119 WHIP over 21 starts. He was named to the American League All-Star team and could certainly provide some great pitching down the stretch for a contender. With the Red Sox falling out of contention in the AL East (48-58 through July 28), it has become obvious that trading him might be the best option. It would be tough for the organization to lose its best pitcher, but that might happen in the offseason anyway.