Morning Marquee: Jon Lester throws first complete game as a Cub
By David Miniel
After the Chicago Cubs dropped Game 1 to the Pittsburgh Pirates by the final score of 5-4, southpaw Jon Lester took the mound and dominated their second-place rivals by hurling a complete game.
It was a low scoring game (2-1 would be the final), but one run was just enough for Lester to turn in one of his best performances since debuting with the Cubs back on Opening Night against the St. Louis Cardinals at Wrigley Field.
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The 31-year-old southpaw was so spot on during last night’s victory, he even recorded his first pick-off in over four years. Lester was working with Starlin Marte on first and two outs during the bottom of the third inning when Game 1’s hero was caught off guard by the veteran hurler.
Marte put himself in a brief game of pickle between short and first until Lester tossed the ball over to Anthony Rizzo who recorded the final out of the inning.
This is definitely something special that will be remembered throughout his career on the North Side of Chicago. And a key play that could have eventually turned into two-out burst by this dangerous Pirates lineup.
Back on August 24th in a make-up game with the Cleveland Indians, Lester had the opportunity to record his first complete game as a Cub but was pulled in the ninth inning after giving up a game-tying RBI knock by Carlos Santana.
Jon worked 8 2/3 innings, holding the Tribe to that one earned run on six hits with one walk and six strikeouts before Hector Rondon entered the game. Not only did Rondon record the final out of the inning, but he receive the win as well.
Kris Bryant launched a walk-off homer to right field, lifting his club past Cleveland, 2-1.
Now, after earning themselves a doubleheader split, the Cubs regained one game between both the Pirates and San Francisco Giants. Pittsburgh extended their second-place lead to five games until Lester put in work during the evening contest.
Ace right-hander Jake Arrieta will welcome back veteran A.J. Burnett with another evening start of 6:05 p.m. central time.
Here’s more from around the league:
‘Cubs Recap: Starling Marte’s sacrifice fly enough to take Game 1‘ – Cubbies Crib
‘Chicago Cubs set for critical showdown with Pittsburgh‘ – Cubbies Crib
‘Tyler Duffey: Potential playoffs gem?‘ – Fantasy Baseball Crackerjacks
‘Heyward, Martinez shine as Cardinals win in 10th‘ – Redbird Rants
‘Red Sox Recap: Joe Kelly’s streak snapped as Sox fall to O’s‘ – BoSox Injection