Credit: AP Photo/David Goldman
15-9, 3.47 ERA, 1.257 WHIP, 31 starts, 191.2 innings pitched, 182 strikeouts.
21-5, 2.94 ERA, 1.189 WHIP, 33 starts, 216 innings pitched, 193 strikeouts.
What he did in 2011:
Last season Lester continued being a .650 or better pitcher for the Red Sox, offering solid production behind ace Josh Beckett in the No. 2 hole. He, like Beckett, saw a terrible September unfold before him.
While being a stud most of the season, in his final six games, Lester would go 1-3 with a 5.40 ERA. Also tied in with the C&B scandal, the numbers don't lie.
What he'll do in 2012:
They say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one. I think 2012 is the year that Lester finally takes the reigns over from Beckett as the ace of this pitching staff.
I think Lester has the potential to be the American League Cy Young winner in 2012. It really isn't too far-fetched considering that he has won more games than Beckett since 2008 and last season, prior to September, Lester was 14-5 with a 2.93 ERA and 1.154 WHIP.
If he comes back with an attitude about him, I think he could be in the conversation with Justin Verlander, CC Sabathia and Jered Weaver as a potential Cy Young winner. There, I've said it.