FORT MYERS, Fla. –– Jon Lester may be a six-year veteran, but he still feels jittery during the first start of the spring.
"Like I told somebody in the dugout before, if I don't get nervous for a game whether it's against them or anybody else, then it's time for me to go home," Lester said. "Same butterflies, same everything. Just trying to go out and execute pitches and like I said get the first one under your belt."
The lefty delivered a strong performance at JetBlue Park in the first game of Saturday's doubleheader, surrendering one hit through two innings while fanning two batters in a 25-0 victory over Northeastern.
After evaluating the start, Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine praised Lester's breaking ball and command.
"He used a lot of the things he's been working on since he's been here in the game and got some results out of them," Valentine said. "Again, even though the results are [an] asterisk, they are results –- something to build on."
Lester also leaned on the lessons gleaned from the pitchers' fielding drills. When the first batter of the game drilled a shot straight to him, Lester cleanly fielded it and tossed it to Adrian Gonzalez for the out.