Left-hander Jon Lester was traded from Boston to the Oakland Athletics at the deadline last month, but he’s open to returning to the Red Sox next season.
Lester told the Boston Herald that he doesn’t harbor any ill feelings toward the Red Sox and general manager Ben Cherrington.
“My time there, the memories and all that stuff don’t get erased based on this whole ordeal,” Lester told the Herald. “I’m glad with where I’m at, and I understood where Ben was at.
“At the end of the season, it’s not going to change my mind about going back there if they are aggressive and competitive and do the things they say they’re going to do. Boston is definitely a place I would go.”
The 30-year-old Lester said he was told the Red Sox would consider bringing him back when he becomes a free agent at the end of this season.
“They told me, ‘We’re going to be aggressive. You’re going to get blown out of the water by some of these [other] offers,’” Lester said. “I’m like, ‘I don’t need to be blown out of the water.’ Why would I need to be blown out of the water? That doesn’t make or break your decision, at least for me. I’m not going to the highest bidder. I’m going to the place that makes me and my family happy. If that’s Boston, it’s Boston.”
It’s not all about the money for Lester, who is 13-7 overall with a 2.51 ERA this season and 3-0 since he joined the A’s.
“In the greater scheme of things, we’re talking about just a stupid amount of money,” he said. “For me, I want to be comfortable. The way I look at it is, if someone gives you $170 million and someone gives you $150 million, is that $20 million really going to change your lifestyle?
“Same thing if the highest bidder is $100 million and the team you’re going to feel most comfortable with offers $80 million. Is that $20 million really going to make the difference in your lifestyle?”