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Jon Lester named Red Sox' Opening Day starter

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Jon Lester has been named Boston's Opening Day starter for the third consecutive year.

USA TODAY Sports

[UPDATE]: The Red Sox haven't stopped at Lester, now revealing their full rotation. Following Lester will be, in order, Clay Buchholz, Ryan Dempster, Felix Doubront, and John Lackey.

It's about what you would have expected. The only real question was whether or not John Farrell would be willing to put John Lackey behind Felix Doubront. By all measurements he certainly deserves to be, but seniority and money can be tricky things to work with. It seems, however, that Farrell has put merit first, giving Doubront the nod. Of course, all this will fall apart within a few weeks, as is the tendency of rotation orders.

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Jon Lester has been named Boston's Opening Day starter by John Farrell, putting an official stamp on what many have assumed would be an April 1st matchup between Lester and CC Sabathia in New Yankee Stadium.

While Lester is coming off by far the worst season of his career to date, there was never any real doubt that John Farrell would keep faith in the starter who has anchored Boston's rotation since 2008.

It's been a good spring so far for Lester. In fact, "good" doesn't really cover it. In 20 innings of work, Lester has allowed just six hits and four walks, carrying a 0.90 ERA. In his last outing, against Tampa Bay, Lester logged six perfect frames, striking out six batters in the process.

While the expectation is that Jarrod Saltalamacchia will be Boston's primary catcher this year, it will be interesting to see if he and Lester pair up for Opening Day. So far this spring, Saltalamacchia has caught Lester just once, with Ross and Lavarnway carrying the rest of the burden. With a left-handed starter in CC Sabathia on the mound, and Lester the sort of pitcher who could really use David Ross' framing ability behind the plate, John Farrell could be tempted to give his backup the honors on Opening Day as well.