Thursday, June 22, 2006

The Kid Is Alright

Jon Lester pitched a fabulous game at Fenway last night against the Washington Nationals, allowing just three hits and striking out 10 in six innings. He walked two, but was never in any serious trouble. His fastball was consistently in the low-to-mid 90s range, and threw a tremendous curve ball, that struck out at least two hitters looking.

David Ortiz added a second inning grand slam, and Mark Loretta and trot Nixon each had three hits to pace the attack as the Red Sox won, 9-3. The Red Sox also played their 10th straight errorless game, as they won their sixth straight game and remained two games ahead of the Yankees, who won last night in Philadelphia.

I think it's safe to assume that Lester is here to stay. He struggled in spring training and at the start of the Pawtucket season, but found his groove in May, and has now pitched back-to-back fine starts against Atlanta and Washington.

With the injuries to David Wells and Matt Clement, Lester has picked up the slack terrifically. Now you have to wonder about the severity of Clement's injury. Yesterday the Sox picked up Jason Johnson from Cleveland for a player to named later. Johnson is a pretty good pickup, as he's an innings eater. He was 3-8 with a 6.00 ERA for the Indians this season. He's a ground ball pitcher, who could be helped out greatly by the Red Sox great defense. Kyle Snyder was also optioned to Pawtucket. With the Red Sox having a number of off days this month, Johnson will make his first start on July 1 at Florida.

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