The good vibes didn't last more than a few minutes for the Cubs Monday afternoon.
It was a picturesque day at Wrigley Field — weather in the upper 60s and nary a cloud in the sky — and the Cubs had just scored 6 unanswered runs in the bottom of the second inning off Pirates ace Jameson Taillon.
But that all changed when Jon Lester walked off the mound with left hamstring tightness after two batters in the top of the third inning. He will go for an MRI Tuesday morning, but as of right now, he's planning on not missing any time:
"In my mind, I'm making my next start," Lester said after the Cubs' 10-0 victory. "Tomorrow may tell us something different and then we'll reevaluate. Everybody on the training side kinda always thinks the worst case scenario. I don't feel that way."
In the second inning, he lined a two-out hit into the left-centerfield gap to plate the Cubs' first run and slide into second with a hustle double. A few pitches later, he scored from second on Ben Zobrist's base hit and had to slide at home plate, too. Somewhere along the lines running the bases, Lester tweaked that hamstring.
Joe Maddon and Cubs trainer P.J. Mainville went out to the mound after the first batter of the third inning and then returned two pitches later after another base hit, leading to Lester's premature exit from the game.
The Cubs ace appeared to talk Maddon into staying into the game initially, but he still looked off as he served up a single to Pittsburgh's Adam Frazier. He walked back to the dugout under his own power.
"The positive of it, it's not like it hurt when I was pitching," Lester said. "It was kinda like more of a mental thing, just not getting my back side through. obviously Joe and P.J. and those guys saw that. The positive is it's not like it hurts. But going forward, we'll see what it says [Tuesday].
"It felt like a cramp. I didn't feel it pop or any tingling or any numbness or anything like that. It just kinda felt like something was in there grabbing me a little bit."
Lester entered the Cubs' home opener with two of the team's three quality starts, as he went 6 innings each of his first two starts of the season.
His injury left the Cubs' beleaguered bullpen to cover the final seven innings of the game, but they were up to the task, striking out 8 and allowing only 4 hits.
If he cannot make his next scheduled start on Sunday at Wrigley Field, the Cubs may be forced to turn to Tyler Chatwood to fill in. Mike Montgomery is on the disabled list with a lat strain and Alec Mills was not listed on the Triple-A Iowa Opening Day roster as he battled through some minor injuries in spring training.Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Cubs easily on your device.