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Red Sox Have A Leg Up on the Yankees, For Now

Devon TeepleAnalyst IDecember 16, 2009

ANAHEIM, CA - OCTOBER 22:  Starting pitcher John Lackey #41 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim pitches in the first inning against the New York Yankees in Game Five of the ALCS during the 2009 MLB Playoffs at Angel Stadium on October 22, 2009 in Anaheim, California.  (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

The Boston Red Sox have the lead, so to speak in the American League East.

Yesterday, sources from ESPN and FOXsports.com reported the Boston Red Sox are close to signing long time Anaheim Angels ace John Lackey to a five-year deal worth $85 million. Lackey adds a fierce intensity to win, something that will fit on club always looking for the leg up on its competition. This signing will also solidify a rotation that seemed, can we say normal, last year.

The Yankees made huge deals prior to the 2009 campaign, deals that cost them nearly $430 million on two starters, and a first baseman. Those signings enabled the Yankees to celebrate their 27th World Championship.

Lackey, at present time, will give the Red Sox a formidable staff that can compete with the Yankees or any starting five. Lackey, with Josh Beckett, Jon Lester, Clay Buchholz, and waiting in the wings, the possible rejuventation of Daisuke Matsuzaka will give the current world champs all they can handle.

Along with the impending loss of starting left fielder, Jason Bay, a deal appears to be in the works with veteran outfielder Mike Cameron.

Cameron will give them added depth in the outfield, someone who can play all three positions. According to MLB.com , the impending deal, which of course depends on a successful physical, is for two-years, and between $15 and $16 million.

Red Sox Manager, Terry Francona made a guest radio appearance on WEEI, last November. He was asked whether Lackey is a front line, ace-caliber pitcher.

“Yeah, I probably do,” Francona said. “He’s missed a little bit of time. But when he’s out there, I think their team feels like they’re going to win. He can match up against [Josh] Beckett, [Jon] Lester, he can go head to head with the better guys in the league and hold his own. So yeah, I would probably say so.”

This article can also be found on the GM's Perspective .

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