"Everybody’s hometown discount is a little bit different. I think you have to get in a room, sit down, and iron it out. I’m very optimistic on what we can do.
"It’s been a lot of fun to grow up here and I’d love to be one of those guys where, at the end, I say ‘thanks, here is my jersey. I’m going to go to the house now.’ That would be fun, but like I said, to get to that point, it’s going to be difficult. Hopefully we can get that done."
It's clear Lester wants to stay in Boston - the only organization he's ever known and for whom he's won two World Series. However, are the Sox ready to pony up the kind of cash it will take to sign him.
Lester will reportedly be seeking a 6-year, $125 million deal. That kind of money puts him in the Clayton Kershaw, Justin Verlander tax bracket and he just might get it should he hit the free-agent market at the end of the year.
But, is he worth it?
Lester is 30-years-old, has never won 20 games in a season, is just a two-time All-Star, finished top four in the AL Cy Young Award once and has a career record of 100-56, a 3.76 ERA, 1.30 WHIP and 1237 strikeouts in 1376.1 innings.
Are those "ace-like" kind of numbers?
To put Lester's career into better perspective: Through his age 29 season, his numbers are on par with Kevin Millwood, Andy Pettitte and *gulp* Josh Beckett.