After learning that the Red Sox had pitcher John lackey complete a physical early Monday morning, his signing appeared imminent. And now, according to ESPN's Jayson Stark, Boston and Lackey have indeed reached an agreement. Assuming everything comes back fine from the physical, Lackey will join the Red Sox, signing a five-year deal "worth slightly more than ... $82.5 million dollar deal A.J. Burnett signed with the New York Yankees"(probably $85 million, like Jon Heyman reported earlier).
Specific details weren't available, but the Red Sox's heightened pursuit of Lackey came after reports that Boston is fading in its efforts to retain free-agent outfielder Jason Bay.
Lackey, 31, is 102-71 with a 3.81 ERA in eight seasons with the Angels, and he would join Josh Beckett and Jon Lester at the top of a powerhouse rotation in Boston. The Mariners, Angels and Mets are among the other teams interested in signing Lackey.
When the signing becomes official, it will give the Red Sox a rotation of Jon Lester, Josh Beckett, Lackey, Daisuke Matsuzaka and Clay Buchholz/Tim Wakefield (assuming Buchholz doesn't get traded to San Diego for Adrian Gonzalez) -- arguably the best in baseball, and certainly better than their rivals in the Bronx.
SB Nation's Red Sox blog, Over the Monster, will have plenty more reaction to this deal.
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