Chicago Cubs Ace Jon Lester Named to Forbes Top Earners List

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Yesterday saw Forbes release their annual list of the world’s 100 highest paid athletes in the past year, and Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Jon Lester made the cut. The Cubs ace checks in at #97, having earned $25.3 million in total ($25m in salary, $300k in endorsements) during the past year. Lester is one of the thirteen Major League Baseball players on the list, led by the Los Angeles Angels Mike Trout at #17 ($50.6 million). At #68 you’ll find a former Cubs pitcher, Jake Arrieta, who is now with Philadelphia and earned $28.8 million last season.

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Jon Lester, who is 5-4 with an ERA of 3.56 this season and a wins above replacement value of 1.4, is a big reason why the Cubs are considered one of the better bets to represent the National League in the World Series this year. If you look at a matchbook review, you’ll see the Cubs among the group of favorites to win the NL this October. It’s easy to understand why as they qualified for the NLCS three years in a row: 2015-2017.

Obviously, the Philadelphia Phillies, Milwaukee Brewers and L.A. Dodgers will be in the mix as well. As for Jon Lester, since moving to the Cubs he is 66-35 with a 3.35 ERA with a WHIP of 1.194. His current deal was signed in December of 2014, when he agreed to a six-year, $155 million deal with the Cubs, which included a vesting option for a seventh year at $15 million.

It’s been a great return on investment on for the Cubs, who definitely are not seeing the ROI on Yu Darvish, a big name, big money free agent signing that just hasn’t panned out so far.

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In regards to the Forbes list, the top ten overall is as follows: Lionel Messi, soccer: $127m, Cristiano Ronaldo, soccer: $109m, Neymar, soccer: $105m, Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, boxer: $94m, Roger Federer, tennis: $93.4m, Russell Wilson, football: $89.5m, Aaron Rodgers, football: $89.3m, LeBron James, basketball: $89m, Stephen Curry, basketball: $79.8m and Kevin Durant, basketball: $65.4m.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net, which is partnered with News Now. Banks, the author of “No,  I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” regularly appears on WGN CLTV and co-hosts the “Let’s Get Weird, Sports” podcast on SB Nation

Banks, a former writer for NBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, also contributes to Chicago NowFollow him on Twitter and Instagram. The content of his cat’s Instagram account is unquestionably superior to his.

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