Josh Beckett, Jon Lester Need to Step Up and Be Leaders for Boston Red Sox
Josh Beckett and Jon Lester have had to adjust to a new manager along with every other member of the 2012 Boston Red Sox squad, but it seems as if neither of them has really grasped the fact that they are the two guys on the starting staff who can get the job done on a nightly basis as the ace of the staff.
Let's start off with Beckett.
The 32-year-old is just filled with the attitude that he can do whatever he wants. He still has the ability to get whoever he wants out without being knocked around start after start and actually leads the starters with a 4.06 ERA on the season. His record stands at 4-7.
Yes, Franklin Morales has been a better starter over the past couple weeks. However, he only has three starts compared to Beckett's 13.
What Beckett needs to do is just come to reality and focus on getting this team back into the playoffs. He could be the potential ace the Red Sox need in the second half if he can just come to his senses and pitch like the Red Sox paid him to do so.
The right-handed starter seems to have an arrogance around him that does not mesh with Bobby Valentine or his managing style. If Beckett can't turn it around starting with his final start before the All-Star break against the New York Yankees, then expect him to be shipped out of Boston by the trade deadline on July 31.
That brings us to Lester.
The lefty has really been nothing more than average in his 17 starts with a 4.33 ERA and a 5-5 record.
It also feels as if the 28-year-old does not want to be a part of the Valentine show. Whenever the manager hops out of the dugout to take the pitcher out of the game, Lester acts as if he deserves to stay on the game to get out of the jam he just got in.
Once Lester clicks and everything is going well, he can be the best starter in MLB. He has that strong fastball, but he needs to start throwing his cutter more. That was his go-to pitch last season and he has not really used it in 2012.
If both of these pitchers can regroup, and really get down to the root of their problems, then expect the Red Sox to make a run in the AL East and even the postseason.
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