Royals have had preliminary discussions with Jon Lester’s agents

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The Royals have had preliminary discussions with representatives from ACES Baseball Agency, which represents free agent starter Jon Lester, according to a report from Jeffrey Flanagan of FOX Sports Kansas City. According to an unnamed rival executive, “[the Royals] aren’t being shy.”

WEEI’s Rob Bradford reported on Wednesday that six teams have “legitimate interest” in Lester, including the Red Sox. It can be safely assumed that the Cubs are on the list as well, as he is expected to meet with the club next week per 670 The Score’s Bruce Levine.

Lester, who turns 31 in January, was traded by the Red Sox along with Jonny Gomes to the Athletics at the trade deadline in the deal that sent Yoenis Cespedes to Boston. Combining his performance with both teams, the left-hander finished the regular season with a 2.46 ERA and a 220/48 K/BB ratio in 219 2/3 innings. He started the American League Wild Card game against the Royals, allowing six runs in 7 1/3 innings.