Originally posted on Ted's Army  |  Last updated 7/9/13
Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here... highlighting the big storyline. Because there's nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump. With a disorganized bullpen and a patchwork lineup against Mariners ace Felix Hernandez, the Red Sox needed Lester more than ever last night in the opener of a four-game series. But their purported No. 1 starter threw another dud against one of the majors’ lowest-scoring offenses, allowing five runs, jawing over plate umpire Ed Hickox’ strike zone and failing to record an out in the sixth inning of an 11-4 rout.    As a result, the Red Sox have their first three-game losing streak in nearly two months (since May 11-14) and a slimmer 3-1/2-game lead over the suddenly surging Rays in the AL East with another tough matchup tonight against league ERA leader Hisashi Iwakuma (2.60).    “We’ve got to find a way (to win),” Lester said. “That starts with me tonight.”    But Lester would go no further with his critique. He maintained that he “threw the ball better than what the linescore says” and was victimized by only a few minor mistakes. He even denied any issue with Hickox, even though he clearly hollered in the umpire’s direction several times, including as he stomped off the mound after a 39-pitch fourth inning.    “Strike zone was fine,” Lester said. “Sometimes you feel like you throw the ball pretty well and they do a better job of fighting pitches off. I felt like I threw a lot of good pitches tonight. Maybe a handful of balls found the middle of the plate. They did a better job of fouling balls off to get to those pitches.” Herald: Jon Lester regresses as Seattle jumps all over Sox I've had it with Lester. Seriously. Quotes like this drive me insanse: "I felt like I threw a lot of good pitches tonight," said Lester, who, good or bad, needed 112 pitches to get 15 outs. "Maybe a handful of balls found the middle of the plate, they did a better job of fouling balls off to get to those pitches. It goes back to I felt like I threw the ball better than what the line score says." Hey Lester...guess what's the only thing that matters at the end of the night? THE SCORE. This guy always seems to find excuses for his performance. Why can't you admit that it wasn't your night? Or that 16 other nights weren't your night? Here's a team on a big West Coast trip (now 1-3 so far) and it's the start of a new four-game series. In addition, the Sox just lost one of their best arms in the bullpen, Andrew Miller, for the year. The Sox needed Lester to be at the top of his game last night and he just wasn't...again. It seems like Lester can never be the stopper when his team needs him. What's even more frustrating is that the offense was keeping him in the game against one of baseball's top aces in Felix Hernandez. Regarding Miller, I wouldn't be surprised if you see Cherington pull the trigger on a trade for a bullpen arm as soon as today. It won't be a major move, but it could be one of the more important pick-ups. The shuttling of minor league arms has to stop soon. Rest of the links: Globe: Red Sox routed by Mariners | Globe: GM Ben Cherington looking to fill Red Sox' needs | Globe: Foot injury ends Andrew Miller's season | Herald: Jacoby Ellsbury out of action | Herald: Andrew Miller out for season | Herald: Suddenly, Red Sox are a team with issues | Herald: Jon Lester defends himself; Red Sox discuss outfield options | CSNNE.com: Lester takes a step back in loss to Mariners | CSNNE.com: Sox may call up Bradley, Jr. for outfield help
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