Jon Lester (SP)
Jon Lester is expected to play in a minor league game Thursday and throw 60 pitches. Lester was scratched from Saturday's scheduled start with a dead arm. If all goes well Thursday, Lester will make one more similar start next week as a final tune-up before taking the ball on opening day. (Source: David Kaplan on Twitter)
Fantasy Impact: Everything appears to be ok, but the Cubs are understandably being cautious with their prized free agent signing. All parties involved are downplaying the serious of the situation, but I would feel better taking the left-hander closer to the 50-60 pick range of drafts as opposed to the 43.8 average draft position he carries now.
Category: Injury Updates
Fri, Mar 20th 4:10pm EDT
By Dale Redman
Cubs starter Jon Lester will not pitch Saturday, as scheduled, due to what manager Joe Maddon calls a dead arm. Maddon went on to say that he is not worried about Lester's health. Lester has pitched 8 and 1/3 innings over three starts this spring. (Source: Jesse Rogers on Twitter)
Fantasy Impact: Maddon may not be concerned, but anyone drafting Lester as their No. 1 or 2 starter should be slightly concerned. While Lester does not have a history of arm injuries, anytime one of your frontline pitchers needs extra rest, it is a casue for concern. Even if Lester is ok, he may not pitch 220 plus innings as projected. A drop to even the 180-200 inning range may knock Lester out of fantasy SP1 contention and squarely into SP2/3 range.
Category: , Injury Updates
Making his third start of the spring, Cubs left-hander Jon Lester was roughed up by the Padres in his three and a third innings of work. Lester allowed six earned runs, seven hits, one walk and two home runs. He did manage to strikeout four before being pulled.
Fantasy Impact: Lester had not allowed a run in his five innings of work so far this spring. He did not have his usual command Monday, as he only threw 44 of his 70 pitches for strikes. Everyone has an occasional rough start. No need to worry about the Cubs ace just yet.
Category: , Game Recaps
Cubs starting pitcher Jon Lester threw three scoreless innings in his second start of the spring Wednesday. Lester struck out two and gave up three hits. In his two starts, Lester has thrown five innings, struck out five and has not given up a run.
Fantasy Impact: Great start to the spring for Lester. Hopefully he can keep it up and be the ace the Cubs staff sorely needs. Lester is currently being drafted in the top 40 of drafts and is the around the 15th starting pitcher being taken.
Category: , Game Recaps
Cubs starter Jon Lester made his spring debut with the Cubs Friday. Lester pitched two innings, gave up one hit and struck out three. He threw 24 pitches in the two innings with 20 of them going for strikes.
Fantasy Impact: A great start to his Cubs career for Lester. Already tabbed as the opening day starter, the left-hander has had lofty expectations placed on him as the face of the rebuilt Cubs. Curently, Lester is being drafted 13th among pitchers and 40th overall.
Category: , Game Recaps
The Cubs have announced that Jon Lester will throw the first pitch of the 2015 regular season as he will start for the Cubs on Opening Day. The former Red Sox pitcher signed a 6 year, $155 million to become the front of the rotation starter the Cubs have needed. Lester is 116-67 in his career with a 3.58 ERA. (Source: ESPN)
Fantasy Impact: No surprise here. Lester was brought in to be the face of the pitching staff as the Cubs push for their first playoff appearance since 2008. Lester had a 2.46 ERA and 1.10 WHIP while striking out 220 in 219.2 innings last year between Boston and Oakland. The lefty holds an average draft position of 39 as many expect his numbers to improve as he switches from the American to the National League. Lester should be drafted in the 15-20 starting pitcher range.
After much careful consideration, Jon Lester has decided to join the Cubs. According to sources, the deal is for 6 years and $155 million. Lester spent the first eight years of his career with the Red Sox before being traded to Oakland this past July. Lester has a career 3.58 ERA and averages 8.2 K/9 innings. (Source: ESPN)
Fantasy Impact: Theo Epstein has gone all in with this signing. The Cubs have the hitters, all they needed is a true number one pitcher. With all of the Cubs best prospects being hitters, free agency or trade was the only way to get a legitimate ace of the staff to come to Chicago. With his signing, Lester job now becomes the face of the franchise and will be the leader of the Cubs pitching staff. Lester has pitched in the AL all of his career, so a move to the Senior circuit should do nothing but help his numbers. Consider Lester a low SP1/high SP2 on your fantasy staff. A top 20 SP and top 75 player overall.
Wed, Dec 10th 1:49am EST
By Steve Painter
This will certainly get things rolling in San Diego, where MLB is holding the Winter Meetings. Lester joins a club that is intent on winning now and will be reunited with Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer, the two who originally drafted him. (Source: Ken Rosenthal)
Fantasy Impact: Pencil Lester in on your fantasy cheat sheets as the clear ace of the Chicago staff and someone who can add tremendous value on your roster. Lester gave this decision a lot of thought and will be very comfortable with his role on the staff, which includes Jake Arrieta and Jason Hammel.
Giants Assistant GM Bobby Evans told Fangraphs' Eno Sarris that the Giants have been eliminated as one of Jon Lester's options. (Source: Eno Sarris on Twitter)
Fantasy Impact: That (apparently) leaves Boston, the Cubs and the Dodgers. No matter where he goes, he'll be a great fantasy option coming off a 2.46 ERA, a 1.10 WHIP and 9.0 K/9 in 2014. He's one of the most coveted free agents of 2014.