Ortiz, Pedroia disappointed in Lester trade rumors

Ortiz, Pedroia disappointed in Lester trade rumors
July 30, 2014, 12:00 am
Share This Post

BOSTON - The Red Sox lost the game Tuesday night, but that will pale in comparison to what they could lose Wednesday or Thursday.

Jon Lester is on the trading block, and things got very real Tuesday night when it was announced by John Farrell that Lester was scratched from his scheduled Wednesday start amid the uncertainty involving his future with the team as Thursday's trade deadline approaches.

The Red Sox are no strangers to making trades at the deadline - but it's not often that they're sellers.

Players like Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz, leaders of the team, are certainly not happy with the way things have gone this season - and the last thing they want is to see someone from their "family" traded away because of it.

"It's tough. We're not teammates, we're family," Pedroia said of the Lester rumors. "It's something you don't like going through. It makes you feel worse, we don't want to be in this position. A lot of guys, if you play up to our capability, your team is right. We should be adding instead of subtracting. So hopefully he's here.

Ortiz, who was unaware that Lester was scratched when first told by reporters, seemed surprised at the news.

"Lester is like a brother to me," Ortiz said. "Pedey was right. We've been together for a long period of time, and just because of the fact all these trade rumors are going around and he being a scratch tomorrow it gets a little complicated. But we'll see."

The three won two World Series championships together in 2007 and 2013. Lester's postseason numbers are no secret. The guy has been clutch for Boston. He was lights out last postseason, going 4-1 in 5 starts with a 1.56 ERA and 0.95 WHIP. While David Ortiz was named World Series MVP, Lester had a strong case himself.

"If we have a big game to play, we want him pitching it," Pedroia said. "I've seen him every start. It would be tough to see him in another uniform."

But with the way the Red Sox played up to this point in the season, there are no longer any "big games". It's unclear - trade or not - if Sox GM Ben Cherington and Red Sox ownership really do want to re-sign Lester for the price he feels is fair, but the ace did say that if traded, he wouldn't hold it against the team during offseason negotiations.

But that is still a risk, seeing as the Sox would lose their right to negotiate with him after the season before he hits the market to all teams.

Ortiz is still holding out hope that a trade doesn't happen, but admits he's disappointed in what's been going on.

"Of course. You know, you want to keep Lester around and continue playing together," Ortiz said. "He's one of the best pitchers in the game, no question about it. I don't know, you're definitely right it's frustrating seeing him go somewhere else because of the situation we are facing right now. But we don't want to get ahead of what is going on, we gotta wait to see what's gonna happen."

Frustrating. Surprising. Tough. Complicated. All words you don't want summing up the state of your team and its ace pitcher. The only game the Sox find themselves in now is the waiting game.

"I hope in a couple days he's here," Pedroia said, "because he means a lot to me or everyone else in what he's done here. I hope that we open the door and he's in there."