Starter Jon Lester has told the Red Sox to hold off on extension discussions until after the season, Jon Heyman of CBS Sports reports. Lester says he wants to focus on pitching and on his team, more or less saying that the contract discussions are distracting.
The Red Sox offered Lester a contract extension worth $70 million in early April, but it was rejected.
Lester, 30, can become a free agent after the season though it is believed that Lester prefers to remain with the Red Sox. The lefty has a 2.92 ERA with a 115/29 K/BB ratio in 114 innings spanning 17 starts this season.
Phillies outfielder Bryce Harper hasn’t had the best spring training showing. After a delayed start because he didn’t officially sign until early this month, Harper made his Phillies debut on March 9. Then Harper had an injury scare when he was hit in the ankle by a pitch on March 15. Harper returned on Sunday and finally registered his first hit of the spring on Wednesday — a line drive up the middle.
Harper finished 1-for-2 with a walk on the afternoon. In 10 official at-bats, Harper is batting .100/.438/.100. As you can see, five total walks are helping that on-base percentage. Spring stats are largely meaningless, though, so no one should be worried about Harper with the start of the regular season just a week away.