Daily Red Sox Links: Daisuke Matsuzaka, John Lackey, David Ortiz

BOSTON, MA: Jacoby Ellsbury #2 of the Boston Red Sox watches the ball after hitting the go-ahead RBI single in the 8th inning against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim during the game on August 23, 2012 at Fenway Park in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

  • With the Red Sox looking towards the last month of this season, there is a question as to who will round out the end of the rotation. With Aaron Cook and Daisuke Matsuzaka both options for the fifth and final spot, Bobby Valentine is holding his cards close to his vest as to who he will choose. (Brian MacPherson; Providence Journal)
  • Looking even further ahead to 2013, shortstop is one of the biggest question marks for next season. While Aviles hasn't knocked anyone's socks off, there aren't many in-house options that would be better than him. Evan Brunell takes a look at some possibilities to man the position. (Evan Brunell; Fire Brand of the AL)
  • Speaking of next season, the beloved John Lackey should be back to start the year with the Red Sox after missing this entire season recovering from Tommy John surgery. With the elbow pain gone, he is confident he can contribute some wins for this team. (Alex Speier; WEEI.com)
  • Yesterday on the critically-acclaimed ESPN program "First Take," noted rational sports enthusiast Skip Bayless made some baseless speculations on possible PED use by Derek Jeter. Over at Hardball Talk, an actual rational sports fan Craig Calcaterra points out why it's important to criticize ignorant commentary like this, even if it won't take away any significant viewership. (Craig Calcaterra; Hardball Talk)

  • With Josh Beckett on waivers, it is at least a possibility, as slight as it may be, that he will be moved before the August 31st deadline. Dave Cameron pondered if he was worth being picked up by any contending teams. (Dave Cameron; Fangraphs)
  • One of the most underplayed surprising seasons has been that of AJ Pierzynski. He has had a monster season at the plate after eight down years offensively. Jason Wojciechowski tells us just how rare this type of year is. (Jason Wojciechowski; Baseball Prospectus)
  • A big debate lately amongst sabemetric types has been whether fWAR or rWAR is better for pitchers. It basically comes down to whether you prefer to judge a pitcher by runs allowed or by the three true outcomes. Glenn DuPaul has a fascinating take on this issue. (Glenn DuPaul; Hardball Times)
  • As everyone heard ad naseum yesterday, a less-than-ideal number of players showed up for Johnny Pesky's funeral on Monday. In an interview, David Ortiz had some comments on that issue, as well as some other issues facing the team and baseball as a whole. (Ron Borges; Boston Herald)

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