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Schilling: Sox should sign Beckett now

02.08.10 at 12:13 pm ET

Posting on his blog, 38 Pitches, former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling wrote that the Red Sox’ best course of action would be to sign Josh Beckett to a new contract sooner than later. Schilling points out that Beckett, whose current deal runs out after the 2010 season, shouldn’t be subject to just the statistical comparisons of other pitchers, but should also be valued for the type of presence he brings to the Red Sox’ starting rotation while pitching in the American League East. Schilling writes:

“Josh works from a different perspective than many, it’€™s why he was so good so young. He pushes himself with an internal bar and set of values that not many kids have. That isn’€™t going to change, in fact I’€™d argue that it’€™s only gotten ‘€˜better’€™ over the past few years. He knows he’€™s in the games toughest division, he knows who people consider the best and I promise you he doesn’€™t ever take the ball, no matter who he is facing, and not believe 100% he’€™s going to not only win, but dominate.

“He’€™s getting to a stage in his career where the mental work, the prep work, is going to meet and surpass the physical effort. Which in his case is saying something because he’€™s a kid who does work his ass off and does want to be the best. When he does combine max effort in the mental preparation arena (which is not to say he hasn’€™t before, but as you age you learn different things about yourself and the game) with his physical preparation, things could get interesting.

“I do believe Jon Lester is an ace in the making, he’€™s going to be a legit #1 very soon, if not this year, the only thing stopping that is his command, when that comes he’€™s as good as there is, combining that with Josh, with Dice, with Clay and Lackey, there aren’€™t many deeper or more talented rotations anywhere.

“You lock Josh up you lock up the top 3 spots in your rotation (well 4 if you don’€™t trade Clay) for the next 3-5 years, and each of those spots is occupied by a 1 or a 2. In the AL East you go into each season with a legitimate shot at winning it all with that mix.

“Here’€™s the other thing. Whatever you perceive Josh’€™s value to be at the end of this deal the one thing you know for sure is that he’€™ll still be giving you every ounce of everything he has, that’€™s just who he is. You cannot say the same thing for other guys around the league.”

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