"Mr. Do-It-All" Jon Lester Had Himself a Busy Night Against the Mets

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“Mr. Do-It-All” Jon Lester Had Himself a Busy Night Against the Mets

Chicago Cubs

With 6.0 innings pitched, 5 hits, 3 walks, 3 strikeouts, and 3 earned runs against the Mets last night, Jon Lester didn’t necessarily have his best game on the mound, but he might’ve just had his best all-around game.

In addition to going a strong 6.0 innings (giving the bullpen just 3.0 innings to cover in a 23-straight-games stretch), Lester contributed on defense, at the plate, and on the basepaths (well, in a sorta-reverse kind of way). NBC summed it up nicely, by pointing out that Lester (1) picked off a guy at first, (2) almost picked off another runner, (3) hit a two-out, two-run, go-ahead single of the Noah Syndergaard, (4) snared a liner over his head, and (5) positioned himself for his 15th straight victory.

Of course, Lester didn’t ultimately get that 15th W, but the Cubs sure did, and Lester looked like a much younger man helping them get there – except, maybe, when he was knocked onto his butt by a screaming liner over his head. In that moment, I could tell he was channeling a younger Danny Glover.

At this point, given his up-and-down season – and good turns of late – I don’t think anyone was surprised by Lester’s pitching performance, but what part of his exciting, swiss-army-man night surprised you the most? Obviously, the pick-off move is the white whale for Jon Lester, but he has done it a few times before. And if we’re being honest about this … he threw the ball to first base. It was a very notable, important play for Lester, but wasn’t – in isolation – impressive. It’s one of the few baseball things that we nerds could actually do.

Recording a two-out, two-run, go-ahead single off one of the best pitchers in baseball, Noah Syndergaard, however? That’s something else entirely. In fact, I think that was the best part of Lester’s night. Especially considering the following:

You’ve gotta love the brutal honesty from the veteran there, because 9/10 pitchers would’ve spat out some version of “just hang in there, look for something in the zone to drive,” nonsense that we all know is untrue, but is often the canned response anyway. Dude was up there and took his swings. Whatever happened happened.

For the season, Lester has moved to a 3.67 ERA and 4.78 FIP, with 0.7 WAR. It’s not his finest season on record, but he’s certainly been a solid member of the rotation, and is apparently a jack-of-all trades out there.



Author: Michael Cerami

Michael Cerami covers the Chicago Cubs, Bears, and Bulls at Bleacher Nation. You can find him on Twitter @Michael_Cerami