Jon Lester talks enter final turn

ByBuster Olney via ESPN logo
Monday, December 8, 2014
ESPN

The Jon Lester talks have entered the final turn, with an expectation that a choice will be made no earlier than Monday night and no later than Tuesday, according to sources involved in the negotiations.

Lester has drawn interest from the Boston Red Sox, Chicago Cubs, San Francisco Giants and Los Angeles Dodgers.

Once Lester has a general agreement in place with a team, there will be other issues to resolve before there is a formal announcement, from a medical review to a physical examination.

Red Sox principal owner John W. Henry flew to the Atlanta area Friday for a one-on-one meeting with the former Boston left-hander, WEEI.com reported Saturday, citing multiple major league sources.

Henry and other members of Red Sox ownership had previously met with Lester during the free-agent process, the website reported.

Lester, 30, went 6-4 with a 2.35 ERA for the Oakland Athletics after he was acquired in a blockbuster trade deadline deal with the Red Sox in exchange for outfielder Yoenis Cespedes. Overall, he was 16-11 with a career-best 2.45 ERA in 2014.

He was on the hill for the A's in the American League wild-card game against the Kansas City Royals and left in the eighth inning with runners on first and second with one out and his team leading 7-4. The Royals eventually won the game 9-8 in 12 innings.

Lester is noted for his performance in the postseason, where he has a 6-4 record and 2.57 ERA in 14 appearances. He's been dominant in the World Series, where he is 3-0 with a 0.43 ERA in three starts, helping the Red Sox win two championships.

Lester, who has a career mark of 116-67 with a 3.58 ERA in nine seasons, rejected a four-year, $70 million contract extension offer from the Red Sox in the spring. He was paid $13 million last season.

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