Let's stop picking off Jon Lester.


The last time I bought a car I investigated a lot of cars. I looked at many of the options and made a decision on which ones to buy based on the advantages and disadvantages the specific car had. There’s a lot to consider when making a purchase of that size ($$$$$$).

I do the same with all kinds of stuff – computers and cameras and it kind of goes without saying buying a house there’s a ton to consider.

So when the Cubs “bought” Jon Lester, do you think they considered all the advantages and disadvantages?

I’d like to think so.

Especially because I believe in Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer’s judgment as seasoned, experienced baseball businessmen. This isn’t their first rodeo, as they say.

Yeah, maybe I’m drinking the Kool-Aid, but what alternative do I have?

There is little reason to doubt the moves that they make, considering that every one of those moves is designed to help the Cubs get better and eventually win the World Series. I wholeheartedly believe that.

They knew what Jon Lester’s strengths and weaknesses were – and are. They knew that in 2014 he had not made one pickoff throw to first base. And they made the judgment that on a grander scale that it didn’t matter much. They knew he was a great pitcher and a great leader in the clubhouse.

Only 16 of 21 base runners stole on him successfully last year.

Could that get worse? Sure it could. Have Theo and Jed weighed the pluses and minuses of that? You’d be foolish to think they haven’t.

I’m not saying fans shouldn’t question moves in and out of the game. It’s fun to talk about baseball strategy and baseball business and hypotheticals and the like.

But at the end of the day, it’s all one big hypothetical that has little bearing on reality.

Jon Lester is a great pitcher and he will eventually find his groove with the Cubs. And if you want to make a big deal out of the fact that he doesn’t make pickoff throws, that’s your prerogative.

But if the Cubs brass doesn’t think it’s a big deal, then I’m not going to think it is either.

Especially considering the price tag. Quite a bit more than my car.

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  • Well said, totally agree

  • Let see......an excellent pitcher will not have a great number of guys sitting on base, waiting for their opportunity to steal. The fewer guys who make it with a hit or walk, the fewer to pick off. There is a certain logic to that equation.

  • Good stuff. Agree with you completely

  • And .... allowing Billy Hamilton to steal on you does't count -- he does that to everyone.

  • In reply to nickpip:

    Very, very true. And yet the Hamilton vs. Lester gets treated as if it's somehow indicative of how the rest of baseball will do against him.

  • I think commentators have frequently noted that Theo doesn't understand pitching.

    Just because a Porsche 918 costs $815K doesn't necessarily mean I want one (to build on your analogy).

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