Lester to meet with Cardinals next week
The Cardinals are next up on Jon Lester’s free agency tour, as the left-hander plans to visit with the club at some point next week, according to Peter Gammons of GammonsDaily.com. Gammons adds that Lester could then potentially make his final decision by the end of next week.
The Cardinals already made one big splash this offseason when they traded starting pitcher Shelby Miller and pitching prospect Tyrell Jenkins to the Braves in exchange for outfielder Jason Heyward and reliever Jordan Walden. The Cardinals would obviously welcome a top-end starter to replace Miller in the rotation, but part of the reason that they pulled the trigger on the Heyward deal in the first place was that they felt comfortable enough with their pitching depth as is.
At this point, the Red Sox and Cubs remain the favorites to ultimately sign Lester, though the Cardinals have now joined the Braves, Giants, Blue Jays and Royals as other teams that have also expressed interest.
— Paul Casella