Jon Lester doing his part to help Chicago bars stay afloat in the pandemic

The veteran left-handed pitcher is helping out Chicago bars that were impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

The United States is bracing for a tough couple of months. New coronavirus cases are increasing at troubling rates on a daily basis, causing many local governments to take action. One of the main forms of curbing the spread is to limit the amount of people allowed indoors. That has taken a toll on business establishments like bars, especially in Chicago. But a member of the Cubs‘ 2016 World Series team has stepped up in a huge way.

On Friday, veteran left-handed pitcher Jon Lester announced that he is buying the first round of Miller Lite beer to any Chicago Cubs fan who makes a reservation at Hopsmith, Butch McGuire’s, The Lodge and She-nanigans, all located on Division Street. All they have to do is say, “put it on Jon’s tab.” And so far, he’s raised thousands of dollars to help these pubs stay afloat during the pandemic!

Lester helping out local businesses with his Cubs future uncertain

Lester’s gesture comes as Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker added new restrictions to bars and restaurants as the nation deals with a significant uptick in daily COVID-19 cases. All indoor dining is prohibited, but indoor gatherings are capped off at 25-percent capacity. Additionally, all those establishments must close by 11 p.m. CT.

On Friday, the Cubs revealed that they declined Lester’s $25 million option for the 2021 season, which means he’ll hit the open market at 36-years-old. Since the team declined the option, Lester is owed a $10 million buyout. Lester is coming off a rollercoaster season, where he accumulated a 3-3 record and 5.16 ERA. In his six years in the Windy City, Lester posted a 77-44 record and 3.64 ERA. More importantly, Lester played an integral in the team winning the World Series in 2016, breaking the franchise’s 108-year curse.

With his future in Chicago in doubt, Lester decided to show appreciation to the fans while also helping out local bars in need of financial aid to make it through the ongoing pandemic. Lester is a legend to Chicagoans for what he did since signing with the organization in 2015. But they’ll remember him more for helping out the community during this time of need.

Next: Cubs pick up Anthony Rizzo’s 2021 option

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