On Sunday it was reported that the Chicago Cubs would give a look at reliever Jonathan Papelbon. Now at least one player is vouching for that to happen.
According to ESPN, Jon Lester is endorsing the move of getting Papelbon on the Cubs. The two were former teammates in Boston and won a World Series together with the Red Sox.
Here’s what ESPN wrote:
“He is crazy,” Lester said with a smile. “But he’s no crazier than the rest of us. He just gets a bad rap for what happened in the dugout. Knowing Papelbon, I’ve always had good things to say about him as a teammate, how he respects the game and how he goes about his business.”
Papelbon was traded to the Washington Nationals in 2015 from the Philadelphia Phillies and had a solid rest of the season in D.C.
He did have an incident in which he attempted to choke teammate Bryce Harper in the dugout following a play. However, Lester says he has never had a problem with the reliever and has nothing but good things to say:
“I don’t have anything but good things to say about him as a clubhouse presence, a clubhouse personality, a closer, a pitcher, a teammate — all the above,” Lester said. “I respect the way he goes about things. One thing you always know is he’ll always take the ball, and he’ll always have your back. As a teammate, that’s all you can ask for.”
Papelbon has struggled in 2016 posting an ERA over 4 this season. His velocity has dropped significantly since his prime years, but he still might be capable of helping out a bullpen.