Jon Lester tossed a complete-game gem, struck out 10 in a 2-1 win over the Dodgers
The Cubs were at Wrigley in the middle of a four-game series with the Dodgers for the start of the third month of the season. The Cubs were 20 games over .500 at 35-15 as the calendar flipped to June.
The Cubs split the first two games with the Dodgers and turned to Jon Lester for game three. Lester was excellent in April (2-1, 1.83 ERA, 0.93 WHIP), solid in May (3-2, 3.29 ERA, 1.32 WHIP) and his start on June 1 turned out to be a preview of what was to come for the month.
Jon Lester gave up only one run against the Dodgers in nine sensational innings. Kike Hernandez led off the game with a solo homer. And that was it for the Dodgers for the rest of the night. Lester surrendered just three more hits while not issuing a single free pass. Lester struck out 10 and faced four over the minimum.
The Cubs didn’t exactly light up the scoreboard on the first night of June. Mike Bolsinger, Pedro Baez and Casey Fien limited the Cubs to three hits and two walks. The Cubs struck out 11 times and both runs came off one swing of the bat.
Dexter Fowler started the third inning with a walk. Fowler was on board when Kris Bryant went yard. Bryant smacked a two-run home run. And Lester took care of the Dodgers the rest of the way.
Lester tied a season-high with 10 strikeouts against the Dodgers. Lester struck out 10 three times on the season … April 17 (Rockies), April 29 (Braves) and June 1 (Dodgers).
Lester went 4-0 in six starts in June with a 1.41 ERA and 0.78 WHIP (eight runs, seven earned, 28 hits, seven walks, 44 strikeouts, 44 2/3 innings) and earned the NL Pitcher of the Month Award.
In the regular season, Lester was 1-0 in two starts with a 0.60 ERA and 0.60 WHIP against the Dodgers. Lester allowed one run, the Kike Hernandez home run, on seven hits with two walks and 16 strikeouts in 15 innings.
In the NLCS, Lester was 1-0 in two starts with a 1.38 ERA and 0.84 WHIP. In 13 innings, Lester gave up two runs on nine hits to the Dodgers with two walks and nine strikeouts.
Lester shared the National League Championship Series MVP Award with Javier Baez.
Jon Lester dominated the Dodgers this year … and it all started with the outstanding performance on the first night of June.