For what it's worth, Jon Lester [stats] believes his last two starts have been among his best of the season.

Of course, the Red Sox [team stats] lost both of them.

It's getting a little late for consolation prizes, and Lester knows it. So last night, when the Red Sox managed one hit with runners in scoring position and feuded with umpires, they needed their ace to carry them to a victory.

Instead, he pitched just poorly enough to lose.


"I can't keep talking about being frustrated and all this stuff," Lester said after allowing four runs in the sixth and seventh innings of a 6-3 defeat to the Texas Rangers at Fenway Park [map]. "It's like beating a dead horse."