The All Star Game is over, and that can only mean one thing:
Back to miserable stories about the Red Sox!
Today's subject is Jon Lester, who according to Peter Gammons, is unhappy in Boston.
This comes as no surprise to anyone who's watched Lester and Bobby Valentine interact over the last couple starts. It's pretty clear that they aren't on the same page.
For me, the tipping point came on June 27 against Toronto. The Sox were up 10-4 in the bottom of the seventh and there was no reason for Lester to stay in the game. He'd already gone seven innings, thrown 100 pitches and the Sox were up six runs. If it's the playoffs? Yeah, sure. Maybe you roll with your starter for one more inning. But in a Thursday afternoon game two months into the season? Come on.
NESN's cameras caught Valentine walking over to tell Lester that he was done for the day . . . and Lester snapped. He snarled back at Bobby (who walked away shaking his head and smiling arcastically) then crushed his water bottle into a cube, tossed the bottle and spit his gum onto the top step of the dugout.
He was furious.
There had to be more to it. This couldn't have been the product of just one night. Especially when Valentine didn't do anything wrong. Lester's reaction was the equivalent of an NBA star pouting after his coach only played him 35 minutes in a 20-point blow out. I remember thinking: God, he looks miserable. And nothing about the way he's carried himself in the two starts since has change that perception.
And Peter Gammons agrees.
So, the question is: What can they do?
I'd trade him.
I'd trade anyone at this point. And yes, I'm the same guy who wrote a column two weeks ago saying that I didn't want to trade anyone. That Youkilis and Beckett were the only two guys worthy of being shipped out of town.
I'm starting to change my tune. Now that Ellsbury's back, I'm willing to give this team until the trade deadline to turn it around. If the deadline comes, nothing has changed and we're still having the same boring conversations, then it's time to make a move. Time for heads to roll.
And maybe time for the owners to sell?