Hats Off to You, John Lackey

By Jim Irwin

So, as we know, the Cubs clinched the NL Central once again on Tuesday, the first back to back division win since 07-08 and the first 3 consecutive playoff appearances since 06-08, 1906-1908 to be clear. It was great seeing this team clinch in a rivals ballpark, and as Len Kasper said, the location meant even more to the fans than the players.  But this blog isn’t about the Cubs, it’s about one Cub, and his name is John Lackey.

We, as podcasters, myself included, have ragged on this guy a lot the past two years, but it’s time to recognize excellence when it’s been right in front of your face this whole time. John Lackey is 38 years old, an MLB journeyman who knows as much about professional baseball as anyone in this league right now.  So when Jon Lester raised his beer for what was probably John Lackey’s last regular season start Tuesday night, it got me looking back on exactly what his career was exactly. 188 wins, almost 3000 innings, 2293 strikeouts, a sub 4 ERA, and not to mention 2 World Series rings.

As much as people ridicule this guy for complaining about what seems like every call each time he starts, I think he’s earned that right.  Now he’s not a Hall of Famer by any means, but as Lester said in his toast “Here’s to one hell of a fucking career.” I hope we see this guy in a broadcast booth someday; it would be appointment television.