Mariners, Orioles Have Inquired On Lester

Jon Lester has emerged as perhaps the most sought after name on the trade market, and there will be plenty of buzz about him in the next three days. We’ll track all of today’s Lester updates in this post…

  • The Red Sox are open to trading both Lester and Lackey for the right returns, tweets Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports.
  • Multiple major league sources tell Rob Bradford of WEEI.com that it looks as though the Red Sox’s decision to trade Lester will most likely be made close to the 3pm CT deadline on July 31st, with the likelihood of a deal gaining steam.  One source says the Red Sox are unlikely to re-engage in talks with Lester’s representatives prior to the deadline.
  • The Red Sox, major league sources tell Peter Abraham of The Boston Globe, have been informed what kind of contract Lester is seeking and that has coincided with the team putting its ace on the trade market.
  • The Red Sox are getting “hit hard” on both Lester and John Lackey, reports Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports (Twitter link), and teams within the AL East are among those showing interest. Lackey’s contract contains a club option for the league minimum in 2015 that triggered after he missed a year of his current contract due to Tommy John surgery.
  • Indeed, Rosenthal’s colleague Jon Paul Morosi tweets that the Orioles have reached out to Boston to express interest in Lester. Baltimore certainly has the pitching depth to make a push for Lester, although they’ve shown a past reluctance to part with any of Kevin Gausman, Dylan Bundy, Hunter Harvey or Eduardo Rodriguez.
  • Rosenthal also tweets that the Mariners have inquired on Lester, who is a native of Tacoma. The M’s have been connected to David Price since the offseason, but Lester would come with a slightly lower cost of acquisition given his proximity to free agency. Seattle has plenty of minor league talent as well, though top pitching prospects Taijuan Walker and James Paxton have both dealt with injuries in 2014.


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111 Comments on "Mariners, Orioles Have Inquired On Lester"


Karkat
1 year 2 hours ago

Orioles would have to pay out the nose to get Lester. The AL East intra-division trade tax is surely astronomical.

Rally Weimaraner
1 year 2 hours ago

Not necessarily, the Red Sox are out of the race this year and Lester will be a FA after the season. The Red Sox will take the best offer wherever it comes from.

Karkat
1 year 2 hours ago

That’s a fair point, actually, since I guess they wouldn’t really be trading him to a “rival” given the current climate. Still, gotta imagine Ben asks for a little bit extra

JacobyWanKenobi
1 year 2 hours ago

Watch them just let him walk on a QO.

d-blaqueqq
1 year 1 hour ago

Nope. Someone is overpaying. We’ll just have to see.

CharlieMurphy
1 year 25 minutes ago

Would be tough seeing him make a playoff run with the O’s, but would definitely sting a lot less if it meant snagging Bundy or Harvey. For all the pitching depth the Sox have, they don’t have potential front-line guys like the O’s do.

basemonkey
1 year 22 minutes ago

I doubt the Os will trade their top prospects (Bundy, Gausman, Harvey, ERod) for a couple months. That would be hard to imagine considering all the rumored trades they passed on before concerning the same prospects.

CharlieMurphy
11 months 29 days ago

I agree, just saying that the Sox probably won’t move him within the division unless one of those guys is involved.

basemonkey
11 months 29 days ago

Well, it’s a bigger deal for us to trade those guys inside the division.

With Lester, maybe he might get a start or two vs Boston as an Oriole in 2014. Then he hits free agency, and may resign with Boston anyways in 2015. The Orioles won’t sign him for the astronomical market rate he’s looking for. No real loss for Boston, since they’ll get him back, and considering they were in a losing year anyways, the couple starts he may have beat them is a small price.

If we give up either Bundy or Gausman, and they turn out to be the Aces we think they’ll be, we’ll probably be facing them for years, if not their best years, maybe even their whole career.

CharlieMurphy
11 months 29 days ago

You say that as if it’s a given that Bundy and Gausman will be HOFers.

Lester leading the O’s to a World Series this year would be a PR nightmare for the Sox front office. That much is a given. Fans are already upset that ownership won’t re-sign him.. now they’re going to not resign him AND trade him to a divisional rival to boost their playoff run?

I agree that Baltimore should be wary of trading that type of young talent within the division… Just saying that the Sox FO wouldn’t send him to Baltimore for anything less than that.

Jack Lee
11 months 29 days ago

Then it won’t be happening if that’s the price.

KC781
11 months 29 days ago

If they trade Lester you can be sure he will not return as a FA. The sox need to extend Lester and Lackey and build the rotation around them. Trade Buchholz & Ruby D.and turn over the BP with the exception of Uehara, Tazawa & Miller

Jack Lee
11 months 29 days ago

Bundy and Harvey are untouchable. Lester is a two month rental, he gets a B prospect from the Orioles at most. Dan Duquette is not a stupid man.

CharlieMurphy
1 year 25 minutes ago

Would be tough seeing him make a playoff run with the O’s, but would definitely sting a lot less if it meant snagging Bundy or Harvey. For all the pitching depth the Sox have, they don’t have potential front-line guys like the O’s do.

basemonkey
1 year 24 minutes ago

Yeah, I’m not sure the usual inter-division stuff counts here.

The net effect of trading inside the division will maybe be a 1-2 Lester starts this season vs the Sox, if that. He could just as much miss the Sox each time they square off too. Next season he’ll sign with the highest bidder and that likely won’t be the Orioles, who rarely gets into bidding wars for top free agents.

bkist
1 year 2 hours ago

Right but its going to be other teams competing against each other for Lester which would drive his value up. And considering that Price is essentially unavailable and Hamels is basically impossible to get, Lester is going to bring a lot back.

Danielle Rennifer
11 months 29 days ago

James Paxton, Nick Franklin, Patrick Kivelhan, Gabriel Guerrero, and throw in Corey Hart (then goes to an NL team w/ the third team involved) to acquire Lester. Montero or Smoak can replace Napoli/Big Papi next year at first base/DH, while Lester returns home to pitch nearby his hometown by re-signing w/ the Mariners for couple to few years. Ortiz is hitting 25 home runs and 76 RBIs so far as it will be beneficial for the M’s to have his bat in the lineup. Perfect deal for both teams unless Red Sox is asking for better offer as a third team would also make sense.

Bob Bunker
11 months 29 days ago

Wait are you saying the Red Sox are going to trade Ortiz?????

Danielle Rennifer
11 months 28 days ago

Yeah, another option is sending Gomes to the Mariners instead of Big Papi.

bkist
11 months 29 days ago

Yeah Ortiz isnt getting traded. Ever.

MaineBaseball
1 year 2 hours ago

Agreed, you’d think it would take Bundy/Gausman+ and I doubt the O’s would want to give up a package like that to a rival for a player who is unlikely to re-sign in the offseason.

Matt_P102
1 year 49 minutes ago

Look for the Red Sox to want something comparable to the Garza trade. That probably means Harvey, E-Rod and two C+ prospects.

Os have enough to make that trade but can’t afford to lose that much.

Jack Lee
11 months 29 days ago

No chance of that ever happening. They can ask all they want.

Matt_P102
11 months 29 days ago

That’s what everyone said about the Garza trade. Someone will give it to them. Don’t think it will be Os though. Maybe Royals?

GetToTheChoppa
11 months 29 days ago

Garza had 2 years of team control left. You’re not getting a Garza trade with less than a year left. They won’t even come close to that deal no matter who is the trade partner. Best offer they’ll get is kemp with the dodgers sending 50mill to help pay him and a prospect not in their top 10. Other than that Lester will just command a top 7-10 prospect of the farm system, 2 in the 16-20 range, and maybe one outside that. That’s if the teams desperate enough.

Dustroia15
11 months 29 days ago

So less than the return on Peavy…makes sense.

GetToTheChoppa
11 months 29 days ago

The Red Sox got 2 players in the peavy deal. Lester I said will command more (4+). Escobar has a 5.11 in AAA with way more hits than strike outs. Has more hits than innings too. Hembree I can’t find current stats on. Cause you know other farm systems have a guy like Escobar rated that high who’s pitched that bad. Sorry to burst your bubble but plenty of teams 7-10 guys are better prospects than what the giants gave up.

GetToTheChoppa
11 months 29 days ago

The Red Sox got 2 players in the peavy deal. Lester I said will command more (4+). Escobar has a 5.11 in AAA with way more hits than strike outs. Has more hits than innings too. Hembree I can’t find current stats on. Cause you know other farm systems have a guy like Escobar rated that high who’s pitched that bad. Sorry to burst your bubble but plenty of teams 7-10 guys are better prospects than what the giants gave up.

GetToTheChoppa
11 months 29 days ago

Case in point- if the dodgers trade yimi Garcia who’s in AAA as well he’s a reliever his numbers definitely better than Escobar. Without question yet he’s not in the dodgers top 10.

Matt_P102
11 months 29 days ago

Garza was traded a number of times. The time I’m referring to is last year when he was traded to the Rangers (by the Cubs) with half a year of control remaining. They received a top 30 prospect in Edwards, a good prospect in Olt and two other prospects.

mstrchef13
11 months 29 days ago

The Red Sox can’t sign Lester to the deal he wants, or else they already would have. So, would they rather have a very good AA prospect and a good with a chance to be very good A prospect or a draft pick in the 31-40 range in next year’s draft? I think they would rather have the guys who are currently playing. I would, if I were the Sox GM.

dc21892
11 months 29 days ago

They can sign him to it, they don’t want to. There’s a big difference.

mstrchef13
11 months 29 days ago

Can’t, won’t, doesn’t matter. If they were willing, it would have already happened. That was my point.

max
1 year 2 hours ago

I doubt Lester gets traded within the division. Orioles do have the pieces, but I doubt they’d be willing to pay it.

snowbladerp14
11 months 29 days ago

the division thing doesnt really matter here. If they trade lester they are saying they arent trying to compete this year and if thats the case they could just sign lester as a free agent after the season

Antonio Alexsander langston
1 year 2 hours ago

No surprise the O’s are after Lester considering the way he’s performed against them basically his whole career.

Karkat
1 year 2 hours ago

Second best ERA (2.78) among opponents he’s faced at least 5 times. And he’s faced Baltimore TWENTY SEVEN times.

Eric Mack
1 year 2 hours ago

But what has his stats been the last 2 years? I think it’s more of an indication of how bad the O’s are vs how good he is.

snowbladerp14
1 year 2 hours ago

the Os are a top 5 team in baseball right now a lot better than the red sox

ChasCaps
1 year 2 hours ago

exactly, his first 22 starts against the O’s, they were arguably the worst team in baseball. Now that we have a MUCH better team he isn’t doing as well. Pretty sure he didn’t lose in his first 20 starts against the O’s. We got our first win against him within the last 2 years

basemonkey
1 year 8 minutes ago

Those were very weak-hitting teams.

His pre-2012 stats just say that Lester dominated players like Jeff Conine, Luis Matos, Larry Bigbie, etc and other guys who never established themselves as even average majorleaguers.

Rabbitov
11 months 29 days ago

You are off in your years on O’s players. Conine, Matos, and Bigbie were all early 2000s. Also Conine was a decent major leaguer.

Orioles actually had a decent lineup in 2011. Its really the pre-MacPhail era where the lineup was as good as a BAD AAA team.

2001 which I believe was Cal’s last year, is probably the worst team the Orioles fielded in my lifetime. Take a look if you dare.

basemonkey
1 year 13 minutes ago

Yeah, all the pre-2012 matchups are a completely different animal. Those were pushover teams filled with stop gaps or AAA filler.

mrsjohnmiltonrocks
1 year 2 hours ago

If only to not have to face him again, it would be a good deal for them!

Eric Mack
1 year 2 hours ago

The Red Sox have to have confirmation from Lester that he’ll come back and re-sign in the off-season. Not sure why else they’d give him up w/ the chance of losing him to another team.

MaineSox
1 year 58 minutes ago

Because they don’t think they’ll be able to re-sign him, and trading him for prospects is better than losing him for a draft pick.

ugotrpk3113
1 year 29 minutes ago

If you’re familiar with this ownership, they’ve decided that they can be a big market team full of middling veterans at cheap contracts. They’ve apparently decided that paying for proven commodities is a mistake.

nightmarerec0n
11 months 29 days ago

Proven comedity? Lester had a ERA over 4.00 from 2011-2013. He completely lost the release point on his Curve ball and the movement on his cutter and it took him 2 YEARS to make an adjustment

ugotrpk3113
11 months 29 days ago

Seems to have worked, no?

nightmarerec0n
11 months 29 days ago

It isn’t encourage when a 30 starter takes 2 years to make an adjustment considering pitching,especially late on, is all about adjustments./

Lefty_Orioles_Fan
Lefty_Orioles_Fan
1 year 2 hours ago

I would still rather have Cashner or Quintana.
I just can’t see Lester in an Orioles uniform.
I really can’t.

Plus, think of the Rivalry! Think of the Rivalry!

mstrchef13
11 months 29 days ago

Thinking of the rivalry. Wouldn’t it be great to have Lester beat the Red Sox on Saturday 9/20 to clinch the AL East, then have him beat the Yankees on Thursday 9/25 to ruin Derek Jeter Day at Yankee Stadium?

Ben
1 year 2 hours ago

The Mariners are “in” on everyone…But move on nobody.

Rally Weimaraner
1 year 2 hours ago

They should match up well with the Phillies’ always available and never traded players.

Ben
1 year 1 hour ago

That is perfect! Nicely done!

Overbrook
1 year 51 minutes ago

They need a right handed hitter. The Ms seem to have a lot of good young pitchers, catchers, and a few other players. I’m a casual Ms fan and don’t really care about their “future” per se so I’d like to see them make a deal for a bat.

bigbadjohnny
1 year 52 minutes ago

Edwin Jackson anyone?

d-blaqueqq
1 year 43 minutes ago

Looks like Lester wants BIG MONEY next year, it’s doubtful that he’ll come back.

mstrchef13
1 year 42 minutes ago

The problem with trading for Lester is that the teams who are “in” on him won’t really be able to compete on the open market for him in the offseason, which limits what they might be willing to give up. I could see the O’s giving up Eduardo Rodriguez in a deal, but not Gausman, Bundy, or Hunter. Maybe they could throw in Ubaldo and cover half his salary.

NomarGarciaparra
1 year 31 minutes ago

why is that?

mstrchef13
11 months 29 days ago

Why is what?

NomarGarciaparra
11 months 29 days ago

“The problem with trading for Lester is that the teams who are “in” on him won’t really be able to compete on the open market for him in the offseason”

SierraM363
11 months 29 days ago

Didn’t stop the Brewers when they traded for CC though.

mstrchef13
11 months 29 days ago

Because a team like the Orioles is highly unlikely to retain him as a free agent, and cannot make him a QO, he is definitely a rental. Therefore, the O’s are unlikely to be willing to give up the top prospects that a player of Lester’s caliber would ordinarily warrant. Makes it a tough fit, and Boston has to decide if the prospects they get are worth more to them than the draft pick in the 30s they would get next year.

SierraM363
1 year 28 minutes ago

Yea, no thanks.

ugotrpk3113
1 year 33 minutes ago

Pitching prospects? Maybe the Red Sox can have a 8 man rotation in 3 years. And our 3rd/4th hitter can hit 250 with 10 HRs.

SierraM363
1 year 10 minutes ago

Maybe if management was a little more aggressive and out bid the White Sox for Abreu in the offseason.

EarlyMorningBoxscore
11 months 29 days ago

they were in the middle of this thing called the World Series.

SierraM363
11 months 29 days ago

World Series was over buddy.

thebanner
11 months 29 days ago

Abreu signed with the White Sox on October 17th, the World Series ran from the 23rd to the 31st.

SierraM363
11 months 29 days ago

I stand corrected. But I still think they should’ve been more aggressive. According to the Herald article we were outbid by 5 million

y:

Scott Lauber

Think Cuban sensation Jose Abreu would fit well behind David Ortiz in the middle of the Red Sox’ batting order?

It nearly happened.

The Sox were aggressive in their pursuit of Abreu, submitting multiple offers and ultimately falling less than $5 million short of winning the bidding for the 27-year-old first baseman. He ended up signing a six-year, $68 million contract with the Chicago White Sox in October, and his 27 home runs trails only Baltimore’s Nelson Cruz (28) for the major league lead.

Danielle Rennifer
11 months 29 days ago

Both Cruz & Ortiz (on another team fighting in the wild card race after struggling against Cruz’s O’s team over the weekend) will be a good showdown if they both meet in ALDS and wins the one game wild card playoff.

bkist
11 months 29 days ago

I dont blame them at all. It was the middle of the playoffs with Napoli an impending free agent, How would it have looked if they signed Abreu while they were still playing?

SierraM363
11 months 29 days ago

The Red Sox didn’t seem too concerned by all accounts. They liked Abreu’s power and were close to acquiring him.

That Red Sox team was pretty solid. They were focused on the World Series run. Nap would’ve taken it like a pro imo.

EarlyMorningBoxscore
11 months 29 days ago

Only it wasn’t.

SierraM363
11 months 29 days ago

Management didn’t seem to mind bidding for him during the World Series run, so I don’t think it was a factor.

CharlieMurphy
1 year 32 minutes ago

Love hearing that the Mariners are involved as a Sox fan. I feel like their FO could overpay at the deadline for a guy like Lester now that they’ve lost a little ground in the WC race. A fair deal could be something like Peterson, Guerrero, Wilson, and Diaz for Lester, Gomes + $$

David King
1 year 10 minutes ago

No way the M’s do that

CharlieMurphy
11 months 29 days ago

Well value wise you’re talking about a borderline top 50 guy (who IMO should be ranked a lot higher), and 3 high ceiling guys who are outside of the top 100 and a ways away from the big leagues. That’s not exactly highway robbery on Boston’s end, but historically Jack would never make this move, I agree… though his reluctance to move any prospects or pull the trigger on trades in general has landed him on the hot seat. If they don’t make the playoffs this year, there’s a decent chance it will be another GM in Seattle reaping the rewards of his prized prospects.

mstrchef13
11 months 29 days ago

I don’t think that Seattle has the financial wherewithal to make that deal.

Danielle Rennifer
11 months 29 days ago

Unless if Corey Hart is included in a three team trade to an NL team w/ a player to be named or two going to the Red Sox.

CharlieMurphy
11 months 29 days ago

Yeah I’m sure the Sox would have to send $ as part of that deal if it were to work out.

basemonkey
1 year 15 minutes ago

The Os just won’t do this:

2 month playoff run with Lester. Won’t resign.

FOR

A career’s worth of facing a possible future Ace in Gausman or Bundy against a division rival.

SierraM363
1 year 7 minutes ago

Do you think they have a good chance to win the WS this year? If not, then they shouldn’t do it.

snowbladerp14
11 months 29 days ago

gausman bundy harvey walker should be off the table if they can get it done without those players (probably not) they should pull the trigger

Rabbitov
11 months 29 days ago

What other teams want and what they’ll get are two different things. With that said the O’s are inquiring on everyone who is available.

basemonkey
11 months 29 days ago

Agreed. We’ve seen Duquette turn down comparable players to Lester asking for the same prospects, but more controllable years. I don’t see why he’d cave now for just two months.

Tyler Jedrzejak
11 months 29 days ago

I think one of those top prospects, probably rodriguez + a mid level prospect and the red sox jump on it. Baltimore isnt going to pay to have him back and the Red Sox get a decent return

Quipex
11 months 29 days ago

If the Orioles are going to trade one of their top prospects, I’m pretty sure it won’t be for a two month rental of Lester. As an O’s fan, I wouldn’t mind a trade of Bundy for an established effective starter with several years of team control, but I don’t want anything to do with Lester unless it’s a heck of a lot cheaper than one of the top prospects. I don’t think Lester gets them to the World Series any quicker than what they already have.

mstrchef13
11 months 29 days ago

As an O’s fan, I would trade Rodriguez and a mid-level prospect (let’s call him Cisco) for Lester right now. I would drive Rodriguez and Cisco to their future destinations, then drive to Boston to pick up Lester and bring him to Baltimore. I don’t think Lester necessarily helps them win the AL East any more than what they already have (although he probably does), but I definitely think he helps to get them to the World Series.

Quipex
11 months 29 days ago

I’m still holding out for a blockbuster to get Chris Sale! :)

Rabbitov
11 months 29 days ago

I hope you have a Snickers

mstrchef13
11 months 29 days ago

I don’t see any chance of the White Sox trading Sale. He’s under team control until 2019.

Quipex
11 months 29 days ago

One can dream…

Rabbitov
11 months 29 days ago

No way I’d trade Cisco right now. Catching prospects are worth a ton, and his value could continue to skyrocket.

SierraM363
11 months 29 days ago

The Red Sox have 2 catching prospects they are high on. Do you guys have any power hitting outfield top prospects?

Rabbitov
11 months 29 days ago

Dariel Alvarez and Mike Yazstremski are probably the two closest things to that, but they aren’t top prospects. O’s have been fairly unimpressive in growing power from the farm over the past 10 years.

Tyler Jedrzejak
11 months 27 days ago

instead the ytraded one of their top prospects for a reliver

godewey
godewey
11 months 29 days ago

Lester said he would have signed if the Sox would have offered him one dollar more than Bailey. IMO Bailey is over paid. I don’t think Boston was ever going to give Lester over 20 million a year. This is by far his best season. He has no history of doing this for several seasons in a row. They are not in a position like Tampa. They can ask for whatever they want. If they don’t get it, they have him for another year.
Sox will ask for the most they can but will probably take the best offer they get within reason.

bobmac
11 months 29 days ago

So Rosenthal and Morosi come out with a hit piece on Jack Z and then put a Boston PR piece out right afterwards.Hmmm, wonder who was their source on the hit piece?

stl_cards16
11 months 29 days ago

I have a feeling Lackey is the Cardinals target. Don’t know why, just a feeling.

Bob Bunker
11 months 29 days ago

I can’t see the Red Sox trading Lackey unless they are 100 percent committed to bringing Lester back no matter the cost. If they trade Lackey + Lester or trade Lackey and let Lester leave as a FA their rotation would be injury prone Clay and 4 unproven/average FA guys.

What do you think would be a fair return for Lackey? Also, I think the Cards really match up for Lester as well.

SierraM363
11 months 29 days ago

Not looking forward to Clay being our SP veteran if we trade Lester + Lackey

godewey
godewey
11 months 29 days ago

Me either. But. Can’t be worse than this year.

godewey
godewey
11 months 29 days ago

I can’t see the Cards giving top prospects for a rental. Lackey as a
pitcher a mid tier prospect , but with that contract it would have to be
an upper prospect. wouldn’t it ? If Boston doesn’t get what they want
they keep him, They really can’t lose in this scenario.

godewey
godewey
11 months 29 days ago

With Lackey’s contract next year he would be a steal for any team.
Wonder what teams are offering for him ?

dc21892
11 months 29 days ago

With his bargain contract next season who would St. Louis realistically be willing to move if they did want him?

bryce1344
11 months 29 days ago

Grichuk and Miller for Lackey and Middlebrooks ? Miller could then be used in a deal for Hamels

11 months 29 days ago

I can’t see the Orioles trading what it would take to get Lester

11 months 29 days ago

Probably not all that likely, but I’d love to see Lester in Pittsburgh

Woody
11 months 29 days ago

Wouldn’t want Lester at any price as his attitude would be a major disruption to the great chemistry in our dugout/clubhouse.