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Red Sox trade Jon Lester to A's

Red Sox Deal Lester For Cespedes


By JANIE McCAULEY

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) -- The Oakland Athletics acquired left-hander Jon Lester along with outfielder Jonny Gomes from the Boston Red Sox for slugging outfielder Yoenis Cespedes before Thursday's trade deadline, a person with knowledge of the deal said.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because neither club announced the swap, another blockbuster by A's general manager Billy Beane to win the Lester sweepstakes. Oakland, with the best record in baseball at 66-41, also receives cash from Boston.

Lester was sought by many teams, with Pittsburgh and the Los Angeles Dodgers among them. He is 10-7 with a 2.52 ERA in 21 starts this season. The All-Star originally was scheduled to start Wednesday night for the slumping Red Sox, who instead scratched Lester ahead of the trade deadline.

The A's are determined to take the next step after losing in each of the past two Octobers in five-game division series defeats to the Detroit Tigers. Oakland had an off day Thursday before returning home to begin a weekend series with the Kansas City Royals on Friday night. It's unclear what day Lester would start. Sonny Gray (12-3) is scheduled for Friday, but manager Bob Melvin has discussed the idea of giving some pitchers extra days between outings to keep them fresh in the second half.

For Boston, this marks another big move of a starting pitcher to the Bay Area after Jake Peavy was traded to the San Francisco Giants on Saturday.

Cespedes won the past two Home Run Derby titles at the All-Star game. The Cuban left fielder is in the third season of a $36 million, four-year contract he signed before spring training 2012. Cespedes is batting .256 with 17 homers and 67 RBIs, 26 doubles and three triples.

Bringing back Gomes, a fan favorite who grew up in nearby Petaluma, provides Oakland with a veteran in the clubhouse who proved invaluable during the A's run to the AL West title in 2012. The A's reached the playoffs for the first time in six years.

Beane believes in starting pitching depth, and the A's sure have it. Lester joins Gray, Scott Kazmir and recently acquired Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel, each dealt by the Chicago Cubs on July 4.

The 28-year-old Cespedes could provide the last-place Red Sox a middle-of-the-order power boost they need if they want to get back into the AL East race. Boston entered Thursday's play trailing by 10 1/2 games, having lost three straight games and eight of 10.

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billjwja July 31 2014 at 12:38 PM

Looks like the Sox won't be competing for a series till the 22nd century--at least I saw three

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smashingmonkey July 31 2014 at 11:56 AM

Huh. Didn't see a Cespedes trade coming. Interesting move by the A's.

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rmaguro July 31 2014 at 3:47 PM

Well Luccino you did it again. 2 years ago you insisted on getting Valentine a pushy jerk like you to destroy the atmosphere in the clubhouse. Now you totally blow re-signing Lester, one of the best left handers in Red Sox history, a team and fan favorite by treating him like a fool in negotiations. We all know how it is to find left handed aces and what did you get? A 256 hitter who though powerful is known to be stubborn. John Henry, reign in your pitbull before he costs you more money, because ticket sales are going down down down. Oh well I'll be seeing the new kids cheap as the speculators will be selling tickets at fire sale prices for the rest of the year. I'd rather be seeing a good team though, so thanks for nothing Larry.

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gghinmass July 31 2014 at 3:32 PM

John Henery should stick to baseball or he will lose the best fanbase in all of baseball, the Red Sox.

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ibdoowop July 31 2014 at 2:26 PM

And while they're at it..... they need a new manager.

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cohened146 July 31 2014 at 1:35 PM

with Cespedes the Sox will score 10 runs a game. However,without Lester they will give up 18 runs per game

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mqats July 31 2014 at 12:52 PM

Beane outsmarts Beantown. Terrible for Sox... Cespedes is barely better than Gomes. They got nothing for Lester. (Got more for Peavey, obviously, than they got for Lester.) A's look like big postseason fave. Sox need to spend fortune to bring Lester back.

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1 reply
tbbucs56 mqats July 31 2014 at 5:28 PM

You got more than what the Rays got for Price.Dont feel too bad.

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1 reply
dave0742 tbbucs56 August 01 2014 at 11:32 AM

Have to wait and see why to judge now . They were last place let's hope they rebuild. Have some faith

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D B Cooper July 31 2014 at 1:09 PM

Look for the A's to make the playoffs.

Chuckle.

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geezerearl July 31 2014 at 10:53 PM

Suspect Beane is laughing his butt off. Getting Lester 4 Cespedes is hilarous. Isnt James on the Bosox payroll as a con
sultant. He must have been on vacation .Otherwise he isnt earn
ing his salary.

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gts31bumbee July 31 2014 at 8:16 PM

Strong down the middle ! Why oh why they didn't go after catcher,Kurt Suzuki I will never know. They were going to lose Lester and should have kept Lackey to anchor the young staff. Lucchino is the meddler, and he should stay home or sell out his portion of ownership !

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