Cubs Roster & Staff

James Strode

Lester is in his 31st season as a member of the Cubs organization, and his 13th at the major league level as the club's bullpen coach ... he is currently the longest-tenured coach on the major league staff ... Pitched with Kentucky State University in college … twice led the NAIA in strikeouts ... Participated in the 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013 Cubs Caravans ... Switched from uniform number 35 to number 00 when the Cubs acquired LHP Cole Hamels, July 27, 2018 ... is the first 00 worn by a Cubs player/coach in franchise history.

Coaching Career

Prior to his current role, Lester was the Cubs minor league pitching coordinator from 1996-2006... Spent the 1994-95 seasons with the major league club as a pitching assistant... Was a pitching coach in the Cubs minor league system during the 1989-93 campaigns … worked at Rookie-League Wytheville in 1989, Single-A Peoria from 1990-91, Single-A Winston-Salem in 1992 and Single-A Daytona in 1993.

Playing Career

Lester pitched in the minor leagues from 1980-88 with Kansas City, Baltimore, St. Louis and the Cubs farm systems... Began his career with Kansas City, going 0-1 with a 1.80 ERA (4 ER/20.0 IP) in six games (five starts), including one complete game effort for the Royals Gulf Coast League club... Was a Southern League All-Star in 1984, going 9-2 with seven complete games and a 2.43 ERA (25 ER/92.2 IP) in 13 starts for Double-A Memphis... Had a brief stint with Triple-A Iowa in the Cubs farm system in 1988, his final professional season … was 1-1 with a 3.67 ERA (17 ER/41.2 IP) in 18 games for the I-Cubs.