Lester becoming a strikeout machine

Jon Lester pitched his way into the Red Sox record book on Tuesday night, notching nine strikeouts to give him a total of 196 on the season. That is now the record for a Boston left-hander, surpassing the record of 190 set by Bruce Hurst in 1987.

Lester was in line for his seventh double-digit strikeout game of the season, but came out after 97 pitches because of some discomfort in his groin. It is nothing that will impact his next start.

“It’s alright,” said Lester. “Just a little precautionary thing. I don’t want to push it, especially this time of the year. I would have liked to have gone a little deeper.”

As for passing Hurst and working his way into the club annals, Lester was typically humble.

“It’s something that’s cool, something that’s nice,” said Lester. “But like I’ve said all along about strikeouts, I’d give strikeouts back for wins. That’s what we’re trying to do is win ballgames. If you strike out 100 guys a game, it doesn’t matter, as long as you win.”

Is manager Terry Francona surprised that Lester is on the verge of a 200-strikeout season?

“I don’t think we’re surprised. I know you guys don’t get invited into those pre-Spring Training  meetings four or five years ago but I think there were a lot of people in the organization who thought that’s what he would be,” said Francona. “[A] workhorse who wouldlog innings. I think we’re seeing what we hoped we’d see.”

Lester is 11-7 on the season with a 3.58 ERA. He led the Red Sox to an 8-4 win over the Rays on Tuesday.

Ian Browne

19 Comments

WAY TO GO, JON! Now, if we can keep getting him those WINS that he has been working so hard to get us!…
YOU’RE DOING GREAT, JON! GO SOX!

We know why Lester was yanked after 6. However, I would have Delcarman or Ram Ram in the 7th. Oki or Wagner in the 8th and Pap to close out the game. The way the BP was used, I am not sure if Wag and Pap are available to night. Oki bombed but we have Wag to back him up. But Wag can?t pitch two nights in a row. Sigh??

Wagner, an excellent pick up. But I have yet to see how he will perform with inherited runners on base.

How many runs did Ellsbury potentially save? If the ball got by him, it would have cleared the bases in the bottom of 8th, not to mention Ellsbury’s grab in earlier inning. If Ells is not a glove glove OF, who is?

007…

Wagner will not be used in back to back games. The “Wagner Rules”. lol.

Papelbon did get the save but I think Ellsbury saved the game.

Lowell with another big game, stellar in the field as well. Drew remains hot and Bay hits another longball. Varitek will catch tonight so Lowell will be sitting.

Red Sox killer Garza on the hill but hasn’t done so well as of late. Time for Beckett to be Beckett!

Hey! Gang!

Normally, if my beloved Sox are on TV, I don’t care who is doing the announcing. But last night, I must have been listening to the regular Rays announcers, including Kevin Kennedy. I had to slap myself in the face to remember that Kennedy at one time managed the Sox to swallow all the “homer blather” he was dishing out. It became unpalatable when he tried to defend the Kazmir deal on the basis of the players the Rays picked up. The point is not, “Will it prove to be a good deal for the Rays long term?” The question is: Have the Rays given up on this year in making that deal?

As I read about it, the key player in the deal for the Rays is a minor league 3rd baseman named Matt Sweeney. Pardon me if I’m mistaken, but don’t the Rays have a 23 (well, okay, almost 24) year old playing 3rd base who was ROY last year, and is the process of putting up even better numbers this year than he did last year? That guy (Sweeney) is not going to help the Rays this year. Perhaps long term he will be a trading piece to allow the Rays to pick up something else (like a pitcher from the Sox next year to supply a replacement for Mikey L — NOT!!!), but this year, the Rays have traded away someone who could contribute significantly to their potential success. Come on Kevin, I recognize where your paycheck comes from, but jeez. If you feel the need to spout the “homer” garbage, I guess that’s fine, but don’t make up the blather as you go along just to try to cover the Rays with a “much too small” fig leaf.

Hey! BosoxBrian!

What are you going to be doin’ on “Da Sout Side?” Root hard for the RIGHT Sox. Sure looks like the White Sox are another team that has given up on this year. I am about ready to leave for my family’s annual Labor Day sojourn to Cape Cod, which includes the Sox — O’s game next Tues pm. Four of the tix we have I got from a law student who will be working for me this year, whose family has apparently had Sox season tix forever. They are apparently right along the right field foul line, where the tarpaulin is stored, in a row that only has our 4 seats. Looks as though I will finally get a chance to see Clayboy pitch in the “bigs.” You may remember, I got a chance to see him pitch his first game for the Pawsox last May when he got sent down after the disappointing spring. Should be great fun, I can’t wait!!!!

You know, its funny. While I keep asking, no one affiliated with the Sox will tell me where I stand on the Sox season ticket waiting list. I suspect my turn will come when I turn 122 years old. And then you look at the Rays attendance last night, which was apparently about 17,000 and you just have to wonder. If you’re not going to support the defending AL Champion when their in the midst of another play-off fight, when are you going to support them? Maybe there are only 17,000 or so cowbells to be had in St. Pete. What do you think?

D. Benjamin…..

The White Sox have mailed it in, just like the Rays front office did when they dealt away Kazmir. T.B.’s front office sent the wrong message to the players/coaches. The funny part about it…Stu Sternberg ( Rays owner ) said he wouldn’t cut payroll this year. LOL! Trading Kazmir would be a smart thing if you did that during the winter, you don’t do that during the season. In return the Rays got nothing that could help them this season. Some people get on the Yankees for spending, I have more of an issue when a team like T.B. does a move like that. The Rays are not committed to winning! Personally I think the Rays should go to Orlando, Charlotte, N.C.–San Antonio, Portland, Or. or Las Vegas. I don’t think it will ever happen in St. Pete.

Kennedy and Staats are complete morons! Whenever they open there mouth, they become instant idiots. If a call goes against the Rays, they say the umps are for Boston. These umpires could care less who wins, as long as they get the call right. When Kennedy managed Boston, if the Sox lost…I would always say, he is getting closer to getting outta there! When Pena hit that H.R. off of Zane Smith in Cleveland, I was sad for a moment but happy when I saw Kennedy’s face down and out. I have never cared for him.

I am hoping Beckett comes up ace’s tonight. For some reason Garza becomes Drysdale when he faces the Red Sox.

Well, A win is a win is a win!!! But, I got sick watching Okajima last night.
And Mathematics takes it toll on the Orioles who were eliminated last night when they lost to the Yankees.
Hopefully Josh took notes while Lester pitched last night…

Brian: Absolutely Ellsbury saved the game. It would be a disaster if he let the ball get by him – a base clearing triple at least. The game would likely be tied at the end of the inning if Ells played on a hop.
I don?t like to see Wag in the 7th. Wag is a 8th and 9th inning guy. What?s the point of warming up Ram Ram if he was not used?

007…

Wagner in (2) appearances has done a great job. He has whiffed 5 of the 6 batters he has faced. I’m with you, I would have had Ramirez pitch the 7th, Bard the 8th and Wagner the 9th. Boston entered the 7th inning ahead by 5 runs, Papelbon shouldn’t even sniff the mound for that game but of course he had to. In Oki’s defense, he gave up a bunt to Longoria ( I wasn’t a fan of that but Longoria put ego aside ) the walk to Pena hurt Oki the most. He gave up some bleeders, that is baseball I guess. I think there are times when Papelbon should be called upon for more than (3) outs and last night was a perfect example. Also I thought that Sun. night game in N.Y. was one of those situations as well but obviously Francona didn’t. I am against that early in the season but come August and Sept.—I am all for it!

Boston was ahead by 5 runs but it seemed like they were further ahead. When Boston took the lead, I had the feeling the game was ovah! I was hoping Boston would push across a couple of extra runs in the 9th and if they did Papelbon wouldn’t have pitched the 9th. The save was in the 8th!

Brian: I think that with 5 runs lead, the Sox would cruise along without the services of Wagner and Pap. But I do believe that Oki should be pulled right after Longoria’s infield single, Pena’s walk, and Burrell’s line drive single and Bard should come in since he was warming up. Pap had 6 outs save and I doubt he is available tonight. Bard may have to close tonight. A win is a win.

007…

As long as Francona doesn’t handle his pen like Maddon does. lol. Maddon was wearing out the turf last night. As you said, he had flashbacks to game 7. A win is a win for Boston as you say. Another win against the Rays in this series and I think T.B. is done!

Congrats to Lester on getting the personal accomplishment. Also don’t worry about your W-L record because if you got some run support every tme you pitched your record would be much better. Lester has pitched well and should have more wins this year but got no backup in a lot of the games he’s pitched. Lester will have a 20 win season before long and till that happens just go out and keep doing what your doing.

Hate to put the importance of one game in a season, but tonights game is probably the most important of the year.
With your Ace going against a team and to lose is bad, to get blown out will really hurt.
Scoring runs stops them from stealing, 0 steals last night.
Sox must take this series, just for the mental aspect.
Francona better put all his bullets in the chamber.
Absolutely leave runners on base in crucial situations, especially with 2 outs.
7 dingers have gone out while Varitek has caught Beckett, 5 by Yanks (career high), 2 by Toronto.
Putting Varitek behind the plate is not the best line-up, for the Sox. As Francona puts it. V-Mart should catch and Kotchman at first. That is the best line-up.
I will hope they win of course, but a 7 man line-up like last years Series prooved Francona wrong.
Go Sox!

Sorry
It should have said absolutely cannot leave men in crucial situations on base, especially with 2 outs.
Sorry for spelling errors too.
Go Sox!

Hi All! Can I put in a request that the “good” Josh Beckett show up tonight? PLEASE!!! Ells was the MVP of the game last night! As great as Pap was – 6 straight outs? Or you kidding – it was Ells who saved the win for Lester & the Red Sox! I agree with all who said that he needs to be in the running for a Gold Glove! PLEASE no Okie tonight! I don’t think I could handle it!!

Tek is behind the plate tonight, V-Mart is on first and Youk will be on third. Lowell is sitting. Let’s keep it all together and wrap up another win!!!

I am not supportive of the way Francono used the bullpen last night. Unessecary preasure placed on Papelbon.

Ellsbury made two (2) spectacular grabs, one of course the famous bases loaded sliding grab and the earlier running grab of Burrell?s line dive. Most of us agreed that Uncle Tito ?mismanaged? the bp last night which unnecessarily made Wagner and Pap unavailable tonight. I am still puzzled why warming up Ram Ram and Bard and not using them. That said, I still like Uncle Tito to be the manager unless he totally messes up the playoffs.
I must admit since the tipping surfaced, the stature of Farrell suddenly diminished from a giant to a dwarf before my eyes. Sigh….

*********new thread*********
looks as if Ian may have experienced some posting problems of his own today, as he posted the same thread twice!!!

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