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Thursday, July 31, 2014

Red Sox responsible for botching Jon Lester situation

Joe Marchilena

Some things that I think I think ...

When talks between a free agent and a team fall apart, both sides are usually to blame. In the case of Jon Lester, the blame – at least publicly – is all on the team. Lester has said all the right things, starting with is offer of a “home team discount. The Red Sox have botched this from then on and are on the verge of losing their best pitcher because of it. ...

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Some things that I think I think ...

When talks between a free agent and a team fall apart, both sides are usually to blame. In the case of Jon Lester, the blame – at least publicly – is all on the team. Lester has said all the right things, starting with is offer of a “home team discount. The Red Sox have botched this from then on and are on the verge of losing their best pitcher because of it.

If, and when, his baseball career is all done, Lester needs to start teaching seminars on public relations. I can’t think of many athletes who have performed better in front of the media than he has in the last few months.

This week’s sign that society isn’t doomed: I’m not sure of the exact number of times, but there were several occasions during the American Legion Senior Tournament where a player made an outstanding defensive play to end an inning and a player from the opposing team congratulated him as the teams traded places.

There are five players from Greater Nashua on the New Hampshire roster for Saturday’s Shrine Maple Sugar Bowl – one from Nashua South, one from Merrimack, one from Souhegan and two from Campbell. Only one of those teams made its conference’s championship and none made the playoffs.

There were 11 players from Greater Nashua on the West roster for the CHaD East-West NH All-Star Football Game last month, and one more on the East. Of those 11, three are in the Shrine game. Was the football talent in the area really that bad? Or is the game trying to water down the NH team after its won 13 in a row?

One of the team rumored to be in on Lester is the Pirates, and the haul for the Red Sox could be outfielder Josh Bell and pitcher Nick Kingman, two of Pittsburgh’s top prospects. Amherst’s Neal Huntington has made a lot of good moves since the start of the 2011 season as Pirates’ general manager. Giving up two top prospects for what will amount to two months of Lester would not be one of them.

The start of the high school football preseason is 13 days away and there are some intriguing local story lines, starting with quarterbacks. How does South replace Trevor Knight? The same question goes for Merrimack (Devin Gillis), Bishop Guertin (Tom Hurley) and Milford (Harrison Urda).

While Pinkerton Academy may be the biggest school in the state, Bedford will challenge it for the largest football program. Reports from the North are that the Bulldogs have around 140 players who have signed up to play football this year, and around 70 have been regularly attending summer lifting sessions. Assuming there’s a lot of talent in those numbers, it won’t be long until Bedford adds football to its quickly growing list of championships.

Joe Marchilena can be reached at 594-6478 or jmarchilena@nashuatelegraph.com. Also, follow Marchilena on Twitter (@Telegraph_JoeM).