So much for the notion that Jon Lester always follows Josh Beckett's lead.

That may have been the case once, when Beckett was the playoff-tested workhorse held up as a shining example for each fledgling Red Sox [team stats] pitcher. But Lester didn't take any cues from Beckett yesterday, as both met the media to discuss their involvement in the beer-and-chicken flap that has come to symbolize the team's epic collapse last season.

Lester gave thoughtful and expansive answers, expressing regrets that lingered long into the offseason and pledging to be a "better teammate" and a stronger leader. He claimed "complete responsibility," both for his 8.24 ERA in his final four starts and for his behavior in the clubhouse during games.