The free agent process continued Monday for Jon Lester as he met with the Giants in Atlanta. According to Jon Heyman, Bruce Bochy is part of the meeting with Lester and close friend Tim Hudson has been involved in recruiting the southpaw.
Bruce Levine reported the process for Lester remains fluid but the Giants “appear to be the last serious team to meet with him.”
The Giants pursuit of Jon Lester should not be overlooked. San Francisco set its sights on improving the starting rotation after Pablo Sandoval picked the Red Sox over the Giants and the World Champs have the financial flexibility to fit Lester into the budget.
Bidding for Lester could exceed an AAV of $25 million over six years according to the latest report from Bruce Levine.
Jon Heyman provided a little more detail on the Cubs and Red Sox offers. According to Heyman, the Cubs bid for Lester was $138 million for six years and the Red Sox are willing to go to at least $130 million over six years. Heyman reported the Braves offer was less than the Cubs and Red Sox. Heyman is the first to report Atlanta made an offer to Lester.
Updated 6:03pm CST – According to David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the Braves did not make an offer to Jon Lester. Atlanta “saw where the price was going and didn’t think they could make a competitive offer.”
The Braves appear to be out of the running for Jon Lester based on the comments John Hart made Sunday on MLB Network Radio. Hart said Lester is the right pitcher for the Braves at the wrong time. Due to the financial commitments to Dan Uggla and B.J. Upton, the Braves do not have room in the budget to sign a player that will cost as much as Lester.
Heyman also indicated it’s possible the Red Sox and Cubs could increase their offers in order to sign Jon Lester.
Reports early Monday pointed to Lester possibly making a decision at some point this week. But according to Jon Heyman, “Lester is said to have two more teams in the mix that he expects to be in contact with later in the week.” Heyman added executives involved in the talks for Lester “seem to think it’s too early to know where he’s headed as he’ll need to re-engage with the interested teams after the initial meetings are over.”
Jon Heyman joined those that think Jon Lester will sign at least a six-year contract for $150 million.