Remember last year during the NLCS, when in Game 5, started by Jon Lester, the Dodgers decided they were going to try to “distract” him on the bases? That led to ludicrously large baserunner leads like these [VIDEO].
They’re still talking about this in L.A.!
Steal bases this time! Enough with the big leads only to distract.— Dusty Gober (@dusty_gober) October 15, 2017
That was the most frustrating part of Game 5 of 2016 NLCS. The billion-foot leads with no steal https://t.co/mzD8qqudxK— Eric Stephen (@truebluela) October 15, 2017
The Dodgers did steal two bases off Lester in Game 5 last year. One of the steals did lead to a Dodgers run, but the Cubs won the game anyway.
Has anyone bothered to tell the Dodgers — oh, I don’t know, maybe one of their scouts — that Jon Lester is actually good at picking off runners now?
JON LESTER POSTSEASON PICK-OFF!!— FOX Sports (@FOXSports) October 11, 2017
Via @MLBONFOX pic.twitter.com/Dmstgs1SgT
The second one above was just last week in Game 4 of the division series against the Nationals. As you know, the “safe” call you see given on the video was overturned on review and Ryan Zimmerman was out. The Cubs lost the game 5-0, but at the time of the pickoff it seemed quite important as the score was only 1-0 Nats.
If Dodgers runners take leads off Lester tonight as big as the ones they took last year, Jon will pick them off. Or Willson Contreras will.
Jon Lester has worked very hard on these, and is now much better at them than he was a year ago. Fair warning.