Lester's No-Hitter, Future Player Gains for Short-Term Pains, and Other Cubs Bullets

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Lester’s No-Hitter, Future Player Gains for Short-Term Pains, and Other Cubs Bullets

Chicago Cubs

We had some tornado warnings last night, and then massive storms overnight. The huge puddles of water all around the exterior of the house have me hoping our sump pump is ready for a serious couple of days. 

•   This is a lot of fun – 12 years ago, Jon Lester threw a no-hitter for the Boston Red Sox, and he recounts his memory of the moment:

•   Look at this young guy finishing things off with 96 mph at the top of the zone on pitch number 130(!): 

•   Fun fact: that Royals lineup featured two Cubs at the top, one former and one yet to be: David DeJesus and Mark Grudzielanek.

•   Also, Lester was battling cancer just two years before that moment. Really incredible.

(Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

•   Earlier this morning, if you missed it, an update on the standoff between the players and the owners about the financial particulars of starting the MLB season. Hopefully some more documentation flows this week, new ideas get bounced around, and a fair and equitable solution comes up. It remains the case that the sport can ably survive a season lost to the pandemic. But a season lost to a financial fight? No one will be itching to forgive that one.

•   To that end, Buster Olney takes a different view of the topic, suggesting that the players try to use their existing 2020 leverage to extract longer-term value from the owners. With the current CBA expiring after next season, and with so many key issues on the docket that need addressing, could the players help the owners out in 2020 in exchange for some of their most important concerns in the future CBA? From Olney:

Or Clark could parlay this into a larger discussion, to address the union’s big-picture wish list. With this 2020 standoff, he’s in position to arrange better terms in the next collective bargaining agreement, perhaps fashioning an extension that wraps the last year of the current CBA into a deal that lasts well beyond the 2021 expiration.

Clark might be able to bolster free agency for years to come, a big player concern in recent years. The union could attack service-time manipulation, which has become standard operating procedure among almost all teams. The union could insist that through draft rule adjustments, MLB address the practice of tanking, which was popularized with the success of the Astros. Clark could ask that MLB raise minimum salaries for young players.

•   These kinds of talks have not actually taken place, according to Olney, and he concedes the obvious: getting massive, longer-term issues done in the time the sides have is probably not realistic. But if the sides are trying to figure out how to come to terms in a year when the owners are essentially asking players to sacrifice some of their dollars to share the pain, then why not at least find out what the owners would be willing to give up in the future in that exchange?

•   It’s now 233 days:

•   Ian Happ is clearly going to have a long career in podcasting when his baseball days are over, because he’s everywhere right now:

•   I am being trolled by horrifying images:

•   Our adopted Lotte Giants have a famous fan:

•   Off the bat, and seeing how long it took to corral, I’m like, how on earth did this end up a single – then you see:

•   That’s fun: a portable solar charger battery pack for under 35 bucks at Amazon. #ad

•   I knew it (sound on): 

•   I was a very passive observer of the Bulls back in the ’90s, so I’m learning a lot way after the fact thanks to Eli and Lu, as well as ‘The Last Dance,’ obviously. But increasingly, it feels to me like one of the most fundamental problems in the wake of the second three-peat was Jerry Reinsdorf’s failure to fully understand just what he had, and how fragile it could be:



Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.