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Cubs’ Jon Lester could miss the rest of the regular season

Chicago Cubs starter Jon Lester was removed from Thursday’s game with a lat injury.

According to a report, the injury may keep him out for a lot longer.

“The Cubs are bracing for the possibility they could be without their rotation ace for most or all of what’s left of the regular season after Jon Lester left his start Thursday in the second inning because of tightness in his left lat muscle,” Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times wrote. “He’s expected to go on the disabled list Friday as the Cubs add a pitcher from Class AAA Iowa to bolster a bullpen forced to cover 7 1/3 innings of a 13-10 loss to the last-place Reds.”

Wittenmyer added that “The nature of the injury and the recent history with pitchers who have suffered various degrees of it suggest a four-to-six-week range for a strain – potentially three months or more for a tear.”

If it’s in the 4-6 week range, Lester could return for the playoffs. This is assuming, of course, that Chicago qualifies. But it would still be less than ideal to have an ice cold pitcher recovering from an injury pitching in such big games.

If it’s anything close to three months, we won’t see Lester again until spring training.

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