John Lackey wants to stay in the National League, Cubs and Giants “may have the best shot”

AP Photo/Jeff Roberson

This comes from Nick Cafardo’s regular Sunday notes column in the Boston Globe …

John Lackey, RHP, free agent — The Cardinals may feel they’ve gotten the best out of Lackey, but they have kept their toes in the water. The Red Sox also inquired, but their priority is finding an ace. Lackey wants to stay in the NL, and the Cubs and Giants may have the best shot of signing him.

Lackey registered a career-best 2.77 ERA in 218 innings this summer for St. Louis and he was the Cardinals’ most reliable starter in the playoffs. The 37-year-old right-hander would make sense for just about any team on a two-year deal.

Lackey rejected a one-year, $15.8 million qualifying offer from the Cardinals, so his free agency is tied to draft pick compensation. But that really shouldn’t hurt him at all.