Jon Lester and Ryan Braun's duel on the basepaths ended with a nice bounce pass
Jon Lester is obviously a very good pitcher. He's a four-time All-Star and has three World Series rings already in his collection. But, despite a clutch postseason pickoff of Ryan Zimmerman, he still has a reputation for struggling with throws to first base. Even Chicago Bulls legend Scottie Pippen offered to teach him some bounce-pass techniques.
During Thursday night's Cubs victory, 8-0, Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun decided to put Lester's new technique to the test. After drawing a two-out walk in the first, Braun took a casual stroll off first and ... all the way to second base without drawing a throw from the Cubs' starter.
Emboldened by the roaring success of his theft of second base, Braun waited only one pitch to try it again. This time, Lester was ready with the bounce pass to third baseman
Maybe Braun got too greedy. Maybe he should have been satisfied with the success of his steal of second base. Even so, it still took a bounce pass that would make Pippen himself jealous for Lester to get Braun out.
With the smooth bounce pass now in his repertoire, runners may need to be a bit more careful when considering taking off early on Lester.