In perhaps the biggest move at the trade deadline, the Boston Red Sox traded right-handed pitcher, Jon Lester to the Oakland Athletics for Yoenis Cespedes.
According to media reports, Boston acquired the Cuban-born slugger for Lester and outfielder Jonny Gomes, in a deal to help address an area of weakness in power-hitting from the right side, in joining Boston, Cespedes gives the Red Sox and vaunted trio of power in David Ortiz and Xander Bogaerts
Currently with batting .256 with 67 RBI’s, a slugging percentage of .464 and an on-base percentage of .303, the 28-year-old Cespedes has more home runs (17) than all Red Sox outfielders combined (14) and has hit at least 23 home runs in the last two seasons.
In acquiring Lester, Oakland adds to their vaunted pitching staff that includes promising star Sonny Gray, All-Stars Scott Kazmir, Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel—who they acquired from the Chicago Cubs in early July, now boast the best ERA in the AL of 3.32. Oakland’s 46 wins from their starting pitching ranks second, their WHIP of 1.20 is tied for second and rank third in opposing batting average with .237
Adding a front-line stud in the 30-year-old Lester, who won two World Series and boasts a post-season record of 6-4 and an ERA of 2.11, could be just the move that pays dividends for uber-front office wizard in Athletics’ general manager, Billy Beane.
In adding Lester to an already stacked and formidable Athletics pitching staff, anything less than a World Series birth will be a failure.
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