FORT MYERS, Fla. (WHDH) — While speaking with the media at JetBlue Park on Monday, Boston Red Sox owner John Henry admitted that the club “blew” their contract negotiations with starting pitcher Jon Lester in 2014.
“I think we blew the Jon Lester (negotiations),” Henry said. “We blew re-signing him in spring training. So for reasons that are pretty apparent now, which I won’t go into, but they’re apparent now.”
Henry made the comments after being asked if his stance on re-signing pitchers over the age of 30 has changed since the Lester debacle, which resulted in the ace being traded to the Oakland Athletics. Lester signed a six-year, $155 million deal with the Chicago Cubs the following offseason.
Chris Sale, Boston’s top pitcher, will turn 30 on March 30. He’s also slated to become a free agent at the end of the upcoming season.
When asked about the team’s plans in regards to Sale, Henry expressed interest in keeping the dominate lefthander.
“He’s a special player. We would love to be able to sign him. I think he would like to as well,” Henry said. “There are the realities of the market place and budgets and this is his opportunity to be a free agent, potentially, which we’d like to avoid but I think he would as well.”
Henry also called the chances of the team resigning closer Craig Kimbrel “extremely unlikely.”
(Copyright (c) 2020 Sunbeam Television. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)