Portrait of Chris Sale

Chris Sale PRed Sox

Red Sox Player Cards | Red Sox Team Audit | Red Sox Depth Chart

2019 Projections (Preseason PECOTA - seasonal age 30)
138.7 2.73 1.02 183 10 6 0 4.3
Birth Date3-30-1989
Height6' 6"
Weight183 lbs
Age33 years, 2 months, 28 days
WARP Summary

MLB Statistics

Historical (past-seasons) WARP is now based on DRA..
cFIP and DRA are not available on a by-team basis and display as zeroes(0). See TOT line for season totals of these stats.
Multiple stints are are currently shownClick to hide.
2010 CHA MLB 21 0 23.3 2 1 4 15 10 32 2 114 5.8 3.9 0.8 12.3 0% .271 1.07 2.70 1.93 74 2.73 61.6 0.6
2011 CHA MLB 58 0 71.0 2 2 8 52 27 79 6 106 6.6 3.4 0.8 10.0 0% .264 1.11 3.15 2.79 78 3.19 74.1 1.3
2012 CHA MLB 30 29 192.0 17 8 0 167 51 192 19 104 7.8 2.4 0.9 9.0 0% .294 1.14 3.22 3.05 90 2.99 68.5 4.9
2013 CHA MLB 30 30 214.3 11 14 0 184 46 226 23 99 7.7 1.9 1.0 9.5 0% .289 1.07 3.20 3.07 87 2.84 68.0 5.5
2014 CHA MLB 26 26 174.0 12 4 0 129 39 208 13 101 6.7 2.0 0.7 10.8 0% .280 0.97 2.60 2.17 77 2.46 60.4 5.1
2015 CHA MLB 31 31 208.7 13 11 0 185 42 274 23 105 8.0 1.8 1.0 11.8 0% .323 1.09 2.70 3.41 72 2.35 54.9 6.8
2016 CHA MLB 32 32 226.7 17 10 0 190 45 233 27 102 7.5 1.8 1.1 9.3 42% .279 1.04 3.41 3.34 88 3.13 69.2 5.8
2017 BOS MLB 32 32 214.3 17 8 0 165 43 308 24 104 6.9 1.8 1.0 12.9 40% .301 0.97 2.44 2.90 72 2.51 53.4 7.3
2018 BOS MLB 27 27 158.0 12 4 0 102 34 237 11 107 5.8 1.9 0.6 13.5 45% .283 0.86 2.01 2.11 68 2.24 50.0 5.6
2019 BOS MLB 25 25 147.3 6 11 0 123 37 218 24 106 7.5 2.3 1.5 13.3 44% .309 1.09 3.42 4.40 75 2.93 60.2 4.5

Statistics for All Levels

'opp' stats - Quality of opponents faced - have been moved and are available only as OPP_QUAL in the Statistics reports now.
Minor league stats are currently shownClick to hide.
2010 CHA MLB AL 21 0 23.3 2 1 4 15 10 32 2 114 5.8 3.9 0.8 12.3 0% .271 1.07 2.70 1.93 74 2.73 61.6
2010 WNS A+ CRL 4 0 4.0 0 0 0 3 2 4 0 6.8 4.5 0.0 9.0 0% .273 1.25 2.89 2.25 0 0.00 0.0
2010 CHR AAA INT 7 0 6.3 0 0 0 3 4 15 2 4.3 5.7 2.9 21.4 0% .200 1.11 4.56 2.86 0 0.00 0.0
2011 CHA MLB AL 58 0 71.0 2 2 8 52 27 79 6 106 6.6 3.4 0.8 10.0 0% .264 1.11 3.15 2.79 78 3.19 74.1
2012 CHA MLB AL 30 29 192.0 17 8 0 167 51 192 19 104 7.8 2.4 0.9 9.0 0% .294 1.14 3.22 3.05 90 2.99 68.5
2013 CHA MLB AL 30 30 214.3 11 14 0 184 46 226 23 99 7.7 1.9 1.0 9.5 0% .289 1.07 3.20 3.07 87 2.84 68.0
2014 CHA MLB AL 26 26 174.0 12 4 0 129 39 208 13 101 6.7 2.0 0.7 10.8 0% .280 0.97 2.60 2.17 77 2.46 60.4
2014 CHR AAA INT 1 1 4.0 0 0 0 1 2 11 0 106 2.3 4.5 0.0 24.8 0% .500 0.75 -0.66 0.00 26 1.62 34.3
2015 CHA MLB AL 31 31 208.7 13 11 0 185 42 274 23 105 8.0 1.8 1.0 11.8 0% .323 1.09 2.70 3.41 72 2.35 54.9
2016 CHA MLB AL 32 32 226.7 17 10 0 190 45 233 27 102 7.5 1.8 1.1 9.3 42% .279 1.04 3.41 3.34 88 3.13 69.2
2017 BOS MLB AL 32 32 214.3 17 8 0 165 43 308 24 104 6.9 1.8 1.0 12.9 40% .301 0.97 2.44 2.90 72 2.51 53.4
2018 BOS MLB AL 27 27 158.0 12 4 0 102 34 237 11 107 5.8 1.9 0.6 13.5 45% .283 0.86 2.01 2.11 68 2.24 50.0
2019 BOS MLB AL 25 25 147.3 6 11 0 123 37 218 24 106 7.5 2.3 1.5 13.3 44% .309 1.09 3.42 4.40 75 2.93 60.2

Plate Discipline

YEAR Pits Zone% Swing% Contact% Z-Swing% O-Swing% Z-Contact% O-Contact% SwStr%
2010 372 0.5242 0.3683 0.7007 0.4821 0.2429 0.7766 0.5349 0.2993
2011 1093 0.5197 0.3989 0.6927 0.4806 0.3105 0.8315 0.4601 0.3073
2012 2999 0.5125 0.4502 0.7533 0.5654 0.3290 0.8423 0.5925 0.2467
2013 3279 0.5142 0.4492 0.7386 0.5605 0.3315 0.8265 0.5814 0.2614
2014 2747 0.4929 0.4798 0.7071 0.6270 0.3367 0.7986 0.5416 0.2929
2015 3316 0.4768 0.4922 0.6728 0.6502 0.3481 0.7588 0.5265 0.3272
2016 3417 0.5268 0.4873 0.7502 0.6344 0.3234 0.8109 0.6176 0.2498
2017 3418 0.5164 0.4974 0.6824 0.6119 0.3751 0.7694 0.5306 0.3176
2018 2524 0.4917 0.4790 0.6476 0.6003 0.3617 0.7383 0.5022 0.3524
2019 2463 0.5120 0.4710 0.6784 0.6082 0.3270 0.7666 0.5064 0.3216

Injury History  —  No longer being updated

Last Update: 12/31/2014 23:59 ET

Date On Date Off Transaction Days Games Side Body Part Injury Severity Surgery Date Reaggravation
2014-04-18 2014-05-22 15-DL 34 32 Left Elbow Strain Flexor - -
2013-05-18 2013-06-02 DTD 15 13 Left Shoulder Inflammation Tendonitis - -
2013-05-13 2013-05-17 DTD 4 4 - Face Surgery Abscessed Tooth - -
2012-07-28 2012-08-06 DTD 9 8 Left Shoulder Fatigue - -
2011-03-28 2011-03-31 Camp 3 0 Neck Stiffness -


Year Team Salary
2025 BOS $
2024 BOS $27,500,000
2023 BOS $27,500,000
2022 BOS $30,000,000
2021 BOS $30,000,000
2020 BOS $24,173,150
2019 BOS $15,000,000
2018 BOS $12,500,000
2017 BOS $12,000,000
2016 CHA $9,150,000
2015 CHA $6,000,000
2014 CHA $3,500,000
2013 CHA $850,000
2012 CHA $500,000
2011 CHA $425,000
11 yrPrevious$114,098,150
12 yrPvs + Cur$144,098,150
2 yrFuture$55,000,000
14 yrTotal$199,098,150


Service TimeAgentContract Status
11 y 61 dB.B. Abbott5 years/$32.5M (2013-17), options

  • 5 years/$145M (2020-24), plus 2025 option. Signed extension with Boston 3/23/19. 20:$30M, 21:$30M, 22:$30M, 23:$27.5M, 24:$27.5M, 25:$20M club option. Contract includes $50M in deferrals reducing average annual value to $25.6M annually. Will defer $10M annually in 2020-24, paid 6/30 in 15th year after the salary is earned, 2035-39. Sale may opt out of contract after 2022. 2021-24 salaries may increase based on Cy Young vote in previous season ($2M for winning Cy Young, $1.5M second or third in vote, $1M for fourth or fifth, $500,000 for sixth-10th). If club exercises 2025 option, $5M is deferred until 6/30/2040. 2025 option is guaranteed with top 10 finish in 2024 Cy Young vote and if Sale does not finish 2024 season on the injured list. 2025 option increases based on Cy Young vote in 2023-24: ($2.5M for winning 2023 or 2024 Cy Young, $1.5M for second or third in 2023 or 2024 vote, $1M for fourth or fifth in 2023 or 2024, $500,000 for sixth-10th in 2023 or 2024). Award bonuses: $100,000 each for Cy Young or MVP ($75,000 for second, $50,000 for third in either vote). $100,000 for WS MVP. $50,000 each for All Star, LCS MVP. Assignment bonus: $1M wwith trade. No-trade protection: may block to 3 clubs in 2020 and 2021, with ability to block all trades upon reaching 10 years of MLS in first half of 2021 season.
  • 5 years/$32.5M (2013-17), plus 2018-19 options. Signed extension with Chicago White Sox 3/7/13, replacing 1 year/$600,000 deal signed 2/22/13. 13:$0.85M, 14:$3.5M, 15:$6M, 16:$9.15M, 17:$12M. 18:$12.5M club option, $1M buyout. 19:$13.5M club option, $1M buyout. 2019 option increases by 1) $2.5M to $16M with a Cy Young in 2013-18, or 2) $1.5M to $15M with a second- or third-place finish in Cy Young vote in 2013-18 (met in 2014 vote). Award bonuses, including $15,000 for All-Star selection. Acquired by Boston in trade from Chicago White Sox 12/6/16. Boston exercised 2018 option 11/2/17. Boston exercised 2019 option at $15M 10/30/18.
  • 1 year/$500,000 (2012). Re-signed by Chicago White Sox 3/4/12.
  • 1 year/$425,000 (2011). Re-signed by Chicago White Sox 3/11.
  • 1 year (2010). Contract purchased by Chicago White Sox 8/4/10.
  • Drafted by Chicago White Sox 2010 (1-13) (Florida Gulf Coast). Signed 6/21/10, $1.656M signing bonus.

2019 Preseason Forecast

Last Update: 1/27/2017 12:35 ET

90o 32.9 0 0 24 24 158.4 104 34 208 12 .264 0.87 1.73 1.9 22.5 2.4
80o 31.2 0 0 23 23 152.8 106 34 201 12 .275 0.92 2.02 2.21 16.7 1.8
70o 30 0 0 23 23 148.8 107 35 195 12 .283 0.96 2.23 2.43 12.8 1.4
60o 28.9 0 0 22 22 145.4 109 35 191 13 .290 0.99 2.41 2.63 9.4 1.0
50o 28 0 0 22 22 142.3 110 36 187 13 .296 1.02 2.57 2.81 6.5 0.7
40o 27 0 0 21 21 139.2 111 36 183 13 .303 1.05 2.74 2.99 3.7 0.4
30o 26 0 0 21 21 136.0 112 36 179 13 .310 1.09 2.93 3.19 0.7 0.1
20o 24.9 0 0 20 20 132.2 113 37 174 13 .318 1.13 3.14 3.43 -2.7 -0.3
10o 23.4 0 0 20 20 127.1 114 37 167 13 .329 1.19 3.44 3.75 -6.9 -0.7
Weighted Mean28002222142.31093518713.2951.012.562.86.60.7

Preseason Long-Term Forecast (Beyond the 2019 Projections)

Playing time estimates are based on performance, not Depth Charts.

Comparable Players (Similarity Index 69)

Rank Score Name Year Run Average Trend
1 81 Yu Darvish 2017 4.00
2 81 Ron Guidry 1981 2.91
3 81 David Price 2016 4.15
4 79 Josh Beckett 2010 6.27
5 79 Carlos Carrasco 2017 3.29
6 78 Felix Hernandez 2016 4.46
7 77 Sandy Koufax 1966 2.06
8 76 CC Sabathia 2011 3.30
9 76 Erik Bedard 2009 3.14
10 76 Roger Clemens 1993 4.65
11 76 Johan Santana 2009 3.62
12 76 Bob Feller 1949 4.48
13 75 Camilo Pascual 1964 4.01
14 75 John Smoltz 1997 3.41
15 75 Jose Rijo 1995 4.30
16 74 Zack Greinke 2014 3.07
17 74 Hal Newhouser 1951 4.54
18 74 Tom Seaver 1975 2.60 DNP
19 73 Johnny Vander Meer 1945 0.00 DNP
20 73 Anibal Sanchez 2014 3.93
21 73 Cliff Melton 1942 3.10
22 72 John Lackey 2009 4.29
23 72 Kenta Maeda 2018 4.16
24 72 Red Ruffing 1935 3.83
25 72 Lefty Grove 1930 3.12
26 72 Billy Pierce 1957 3.40
27 72 Jon Lester 2014 3.11
28 71 Ted Higuera 1988 2.61
29 71 Bert Blyleven 1981 2.94
30 71 Cy Blanton 1939 4.93
31 71 Jim Bunning 1962 3.91 DNP
32 70 Jake Peavy 2011 4.92
33 70 Cole Hamels 2014 2.64
34 70 Ben Sheets 2009 0.00 DNP
35 70 Dan Haren 2011 3.44
36 70 Jacob deGrom 2018 1.99
37 69 Gio Gonzalez 2016 4.97
38 69 Tim Lincecum 2014 4.97
39 69 Juan Marichal 1968 2.93
40 69 Johnny Allen 1935 3.53
41 69 Lance Lynn 2017 3.86
42 69 Adam Wainwright 2012 4.35
43 69 Don Sutton 1975 3.08 DNP
44 69 Wade Davis 2016 1.87
45 69 J.R. Richard 1980 2.45
46 69 Justin Verlander 2013 3.87
47 68 Corey Kluber 2016 3.43
48 68 Matt Garza 2014 4.24
49 67 Randy Johnson 1994 3.40
50 67 Curt Schilling 1997 3.40
51 67 Pat Malone 1933 4.49
52 67 Erik Hanson 1995 4.53
53 67 Fergie Jenkins 1973 4.42
54 66 Preacher Roe 1946 6.43
55 66 Jered Weaver 2013 3.38
56 66 David Phelps 2017 3.72
57 66 Bret Saberhagen 1994 2.94
58 66 Octavio Dotel 2004 4.01
59 66 Josh Johnson 2014 0.00 DNP
60 66 David Cone 1993 3.61
61 65 Cliff Lee 2009 3.42
62 65 Hong-Chih Kuo 2012 0.00 DNP
63 65 Francisco Liriano 2014 3.77
64 65 George Pipgras 1930 4.74
65 65 Brett Cecil 2017 4.14
66 65 Mike Mussina 1999 3.90
67 65 Charlie Root 1929 3.82
68 65 Max Scherzer 2015 2.91
69 65 Sean Marshall 2013 2.61
70 64 Harvey Haddix 1956 4.42
71 64 Kelvim Escobar 2006 4.42
72 64 Johnny Sain 1948 2.82
73 64 Don Newcombe 1956 3.39
74 64 Joakim Soria 2014 3.86
75 64 A.J. Burnett 2007 4.02
76 64 Watty Clark 1932 4.02
77 64 Van Lingle Mungo 1941 9.00
78 64 C.J. Wilson 2011 3.59
79 64 Shaun Marcum 2012 4.14
80 64 Dizzy Dean 1940 5.83
81 64 Virgil Trucks 1947 5.20
82 64 Jon Matlack 1980 4.26
83 64 Eric Gagne 2006 0.00
84 64 Joe Page 1948 4.82
85 64 Brett Myers 2011 4.83
86 63 Jake Arrieta 2016 3.24
87 63 Mike Minor 2018 4.30
88 63 Aaron Harang 2008 5.08
89 63 Shane Reynolds 1998 3.82
90 63 Charlie Furbush 2016 0.00 DNP
91 63 Joaquin Benoit 2008 5.60
92 63 Norm Charlton 1993 3.12
93 63 Rafael Soriano 2010 2.02
94 63 Wilbur Cooper 1922 3.97
95 63 Mike Cuellar 1967 3.62
96 63 Gaylord Perry 1969 3.18
97 63 Billy Wagner 2002 2.52
98 63 Mort Cooper 1943 2.55
99 63 Ryne Duren 1959 2.11
100 63 Robb Nen 2000 2.05

BP Annual Player Comments

2019  Due to publishing agreements, the 2019 player comments and team essays are only available in the Baseball Prospectus 2019 book (available in hardcopy, and soon e-book and Kindle).
2018 Want to endear yourself to a tough fan base? Have the type of April Sale did in his inaugural season with the Red Sox. In five April starts composed of 37 2/3 innings, Sale allowed five earned runs, struck out 52 batters and posted a 1.19 ERA. It was the beginning of a dominant campaign from Sale, and an especially absurd first half. Sale became the second Red Sox ever to strike out 300 batters in a season (the first was Pedro, of course), and just the fourth pitcher ever to reach that milestone in his first season with a new team. He posted the second-most PWARP in the majors and second-best DRA among AL starters en route to a second-place AL Cy Young finish. The elephant in the room is that Sale faded down the stretch. His ERA in August and September was north of 4.00, and his first-ever playoff start in the ALDS was a disaster. That shouldn’t diminish what Sale accomplished in the first four months of the season, but it’s fair to wonder if Sale would be best served dialing it back a bit in an effort to hold up for an entire regular season and, the Red Sox hope, a few starts beyond.
2017 In 2015, Sale posted the 11th-best strikeout rate by any starter in history. Last year, that strikeout rate dipped by 2.5 batters per full game, as did his fastball by two mph, and all that really suffered was his FIP and a set of throwbacks. This was intentional: he wanted to work deeper into games and did so, averaging an additional two outs per start. He finished games six times, a career-best, finally resembling a Felix Hernandez-style ace instead of a good and promising left-handed Gumby. He has a team-friendly contract through 2019, which along with Sale's overall greatness is how the White Sox turned him into a big package of Red Sox prospects in December.
2016 If it weren't for Max Scherzer (who got to face pitchers), Sale would have set a record in 2015. He allowed a 75.9-percent contact rate on pitches in the strike zone, a number bested (among starters) only by Scherzer since the dawn of the PITCHf/x Era. That's the kind of pitcher Sale has become: capable of pounding the zone without fear, and still missing bats at a stunning rate. He did give up a bit more power and hard contact than is his custom, but so many batters made no contact at all that it didn't really matter. Oh, and despite the terrifying delivery and the sky-high pitch counts, he made a career-high 31 starts, without incident.
2015 Jameson Taillon, Drew Pomeranz and Matt Harvey were all taken before Sale in the 2010 draft. This isn't the beginning of a "can you believe Sale's been better" comment; it's not unusual for a mid-first rounder to outproduce some guys ahead of him, and Taillon, Pomeranz and Harvey all have plenty of value. But what's fascinating is that all three of those players were considered relatively safe at the time of the draft, and all have broken at some point. Sale, who has a delivery that makes anyone with eyes and an arm cringe, just keeps pitching.

Yes, Sale has missed time with shoulder and elbow injuries during his career, but he has avoided the knife to this point and logged 85 starts over the past three years. Maybe the baseball gods take him away some day, but at this point, saying "I told you so" if he does break will look petty. No one thought Sale would last this long. His dominance is beyond question, and he's as good a candidate as any to win the AL Cy Young in 2015. Savor his starts and relish the fact that, for once, we can be happy at how little we know about pitchers.

2014 Regardless of your baseball rooting interests, if you dont dig watching Sale pitch youre probably immune to joy. A rail-thin lefty scarecrow, Sale uses a flailing corkscrew delivery that he miraculously manages to repeat; hitters cant feel comfortable facing a mid-90s heater or darting slider delivered by a 6-foot-6 version of the Tasmanian Devil. Sale continues to confound those who expect his arm to fall off, reaching the 200-inning plateau for the first time last season and earning a non-inverted W in the All-Star Game. Pitching in the hitter-friendly Cell inflates his traditional numbers and masks some of his true value, but outstanding command of his dominating stuff makes Sale one of baseballs few true aces. At least until he breaks.
2013 Sale's season was the 20th-best, based on pitcher WARP, by a White Sox hurler since 1950, and the seventh-best WARP-per-inning for a White Sox starting pitcher in that span. An early-season MRI gave everyone a scareprompting a relief outing and discussion of a full-time move to the bullpenbut the results came back clean. Predictably for a pitcher increasing his workload to career highs after a season in relief, Sale wore down as the summer wore on, his velocity and effectiveness dipping, allowing batters an OPS over 790 after August 1. If Sale had a textbook delivery, there would be minimal concern about the innings, but he doesn't: Terms like elbow drag, Inverted W, and terrifying are bandied about. It's a tightrope he's walking, because that funky delivery allows his sinker-slider combination to erase left-handed batters, and his changeup has become good enough that righties no longer look forward to facing him, either.
2012 Sale spent his first full season in the bigs working out of the pen, moving his way up the bullpen pecking order and leaving White Sox fans hoping for great things. The lanky lefty has terrific velocity, unleashing mid-90s heat from a low three-quarters slot while mixing in a plus changeup, but it was the in-season development of a new slider grip that helped Sale baffle hitters to the tune of .154/.233/.265 in the second half. The Sox will move him to the rotation this year, and if Sale can continue to hold hitters to a .220 TAvbetter than Jered Weaverhell be a Cy Young candidate. But extrapolating those numbers to a full starter workload is just the sort of voodoo sabermetrics you should learn to ignore during an election year. Nevertheless, Sale has the stuff to front Chicagos rotation for a long time, and his future is now.
2011 Sale was seen in some quarters as the top college arm available last June, so the Sox were understandably delighted that the big power lefty fell to them with the 13th overall pick. With a fastball that sits in the mid-90s and tops out at 98, supplemented with a polished change, he didn't have much to prove in the minors if only tasked with relief work, which put him in the majors less than two months after being drafted. The question now is whether the pen was just a workload-minded vehicle for Sale's fast-track adaptation to the pro game, or if he might get moved back to starting. Questions about Peavy's availability early in the season will define what is immediately possible, but the chance for Sale's total innings count to be managed via pitching in the skippable fifth slot and then limited by a return to the pen upon Peavy's return would be a great way to make sure the lanky lefty gets employed to good effect.

BP Articles

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BP Chats

2020-11-13 12:00:00 (link to chat)Any high-priced good players you think the Mets would be wise to target in a trade where they wouldn't have to give up much in return?
(Tony from Jersey)
Someone suggested Chris Sale to me recently which is an interesting one, but difficult to do until he's throwing again I suppose. It's also tricky to know who is actually available. Like would Houston dump the rest of the Greinke deal? Maybe! (Jeffrey Paternostro)
2020-03-20 13:00:00 (link to chat)In a roto dynasty startup, what range of prospect would you offer for one of the latest TJ pitchers (Severino or Sale)? What would it take for you to accept trading away Severino or Sale?
(MK from Houston)
It never hurts to offer a little lower than value to see if you capture the hysteria surrounding TJS. At the moment, we have Luis Severino at 149 overall on our Top 500, which is lower than I have seen others drop him. This places him below our 26th ranked prospect. I think an offer of a backend top-50 prospect for Severino is a good starting point, but use your judgment and find out what prospects interest the other owner before blindly offering. You might be surprised either way and it could avoid an overpay or a perceived insult. As for Chris Sale, his TJS is fresh and we have yet to fully update the Top 500 to reflect his fall. I would anticipate he will fall to the backend of the top 100 (we previously had him at 53, which even baked in some risk to start with). I would consider offering a bit more for Sale than Severino, but I would again start with a backend top-50 prospect and again reach out before making any offer. These owners also may be more receptive to an offer of a MLB piece to replace the injured SP rather than a prospect and you may be able to squeeze more value from a trade that way. (Jesse Roche)
2020-03-20 13:00:00 (link to chat)With the uncertainty of the upcoming season, how would you value guys like E5 and Charlie Morton (i.e. potentially their last season) against TJS guys (e.g. Sale and Sevy)?
(Jefferson Airplane from Boston)
I easily prefer Chris Sale to all of the above. Luis Severino and Charlies Morton is a closer call, but I still prefer Morton until we have a clearer picture of when the season will begin. One (Encarnacion) is not like the others. (Jesse Roche)
2020-03-20 13:00:00 (link to chat)Could you put a comp on Garrett Crochet? Chris Sale starter kit?
(Squirrel Pie from Pandemic Culinary Academy)
Crochet is easily in the top 5 pitchers for me at the moment in this class. His season was delayed due to shoulder soreness and only made one start (which I need to check out). Reports have him with three potential 6 offerings (fastball, curveball, changeup) and some command issues. Obviously, the shoulder soreness is also a concern. His delivery is reminiscent of Chris Sale, but Sale is a unicorn. (Jesse Roche)
2020-03-11 13:00:00 (link to chat)I know these are all league/context specific buttttt, what would you be looking to do with Chris Sale in dynasty points? I want to trade him before the TJS shoe drops and am obviously willing to accept a discount. What is the minimum hitter you would be willing to accept for him - dare I venture into Kyle Lewis territory?
(Jojo from SD)
I'd aim well higher than Lewis but I'm also showing a bit more caution there than others in buying back in (though I'd love for him to be the real deal again). I'm terrible at pulling a minimum baseline type name, but while I appreciate the concern about TJ, I'd probably still be looking for a top-50 prospect to give up an arm like his. (Craig Goldstein)
2020-02-21 13:00:00 (link to chat)Have a bit of a roster crunch in my keep 8 league. Already planning to keep bellinger, Harper, Pete Alonso, rendon, Jose Ramirez and Jacob deGrom. Which three would you keep around from Eugenio Suarez, Ozzie Albies, Max Kepler, Starling Marte, Chris Sale, Trevor Bauer or Corey Kluber? Thanks!
(Jon from Warshington )
It depends on league size and scoring. I also count 6 you plan to keep so not sure there is room for 3 in a keep 8 league. Regardless, I'll give you my top 2 plus a 3rd! (1) Albies, (2) Marte, and (3) Sale. I'd consider Suarez, but you are already keeping two 3B. (Jesse Roche)
2019-08-21 13:00:00 (link to chat)Is the gap between Mize, Manning, and Tarik Skubal really all that big at this point? What Skubal has done this year across multiple levels has been absurd.
(Steve from Tacoma)
Skubal still has question marks surrounding his secondary pitches, and he's a fly-ball pitcher who hasn't faced the juiced ball as of yet. The numbers are incredible. But until he finds success at Triple-A, I'm worried that he's more Ben Lively than Chris Sale. (JP Breen)
2019-07-29 13:00:00 (link to chat)I can have Taylor Trammell for 2020 and 2021? Or, I can trade him for 2 months of Chris Sale. Should I? Do you feel Trammell is receiving full time MLB ABs this time next year?
(Vic from Baltimore)
I love Trammell, but he hasn't really been very good this year. I'd be surprised if he's seeing regular PT this time next season. Which means it's 2021 Trammell vs 2019 Sale. I'm taking Sale. (Mark Barry)
2019-07-17 13:00:00 (link to chat)In my H2H dynasty league, I went all-in by trading for Chris Sale and Noah Syndergaard. I haven't won a week since. Now I've got nothing to sell to improve. Should I just re-sell them and give up on 2019?
(Jordan from South Dakota)
I don't know when you made that trade but it kind of depends on where you sit currently and your upcoming schedule. It's not like they'll be useless next year either. (Craig Goldstein)
2019-07-03 13:00:00 (link to chat)I'm rebuilding in one of my dynasty leagues. Actually, I'm rebuilding in all of them, but my question is just about one. Anyway... this week I traded Chris Sale and Justin Verlander for Drew Waters, Jordan Groshans, and Dustin May. How did I do?
(Aaron from Minnesota)
So here's the other end. Maybe it was two deals for Aaron that encompassed all these guys? I don't love it, Aaron. In fact, I checked to see if this was Aaron Gleeman just in case I had to be nice about it. It sucks. It's not good. Those three names for Sale alone...I can see. But then you just have Verlander for nothing. And I love May and Waters. Not good, Aaron. Not good. (Craig Goldstein)
2019-07-01 12:00:00 (link to chat)In a dynasty league, I just traded away every single one of my prospects and draft picks in two separate trades for Chris Sale and Noah Syndergaard. Both have enormous salaries, so I will cut all my other players and keep the two of them. How did I do?
(Jordan from South Dakota)
Build a time machine and forward your resume to Drayton MacLane? (Jeffrey Paternostro)
2019-05-10 13:00:00 (link to chat)Chris Sale and Kris Bryant are showing signs of returning to form. Are there any buy low candidates you'd be trying to acquire?
(Dovahkiin from Whiterun)
I wrote about Jose Ramirez this week. I don't really know what has happened to him, but all the underlying numbers are really similar to back when he was one of the best hitters in the league. I'm still (relatively) optimistic. I'll take all the Vladito panic shares and I'm picking Chris Taylor back up. (Mark Barry)
2019-05-15 13:00:00 (link to chat)So the Mariners aren't the best team in baseball? And the Cubs don't suck? And Chris Sale doesn't suck? I don't get it. Oh wait, yes I do...It was April!
(Buddy from Peoria, IL)
Just to add: please don't use WAR until like, July at the absolute earliest. WAR has significant error bars on full-season totals, using mid-season valuations without accounting for that margin for error is a disservice, unless you're providing the adequate caveats. (Craig Goldstein)
2019-04-10 21:00:00 (link to chat)You gotta love April baseball...Cubs fans and Red Sox fans are panicking. Mariners fans are thinking playoffs. Shane Greene is on pace for 100 saves. Can't wait to see what comes from the next 10 days!
(Buddy from Peoria, IL)
You aren't kidding, Buddy. I think Cubs fans ... should maybe panic a little, and I'm not just saying that because of PECOTA. That division is rough and their pitching staff has neither reinforcements on the way, nor a magical reverse aging potion (to my knowledge). The Red Sox should be worried about Chris Sale, but there isn't a whole lot else that has happened that a larger sample can't cure. Unfortunately, the same might be said for the Mariners and their current obliviousness to the step-back year that was planned. (Zach Crizer)
2019-03-04 16:00:00 (link to chat)10 team AL only. Have to make decisions on Chris Sale and Buxton. Keep Sale for this year only at $32 or for 2019-2021 for $42. Buxton ..$11 for this year or $21 for 2019-2021. 5 x 5 Roto.
(Vic from Baltimore)
Sale would scare me at that price. Buxton is a gamble at $21 next year as well. I'd do Buxton at $11 for just one season. (Scott Delp)
2018-09-10 14:00:00 (link to chat)Justin Mason is mad. He's conducting mock 2019 fantasy baseball drafts this weekend. Which players do you see infiltrating the top 10 picks in 2019 compared to this season's ADP top 10? Jose Ramirez? Aaron Judge? Chris Sale? And who do we see dropping out? Kershaw? Harper? Stanton? (2018 ADP) 1 Mike Trout 2 Jose Altuve 3 Nolan Arenado 4 Trea Turner 5 Clayton Kershaw 6 Bryce Harper 7 Paul Goldschmidt 8 Giancarlo Stanton 9 Charlie Blackmon 10 Mookie Betts
(Tom Pringle from UK)
He is. I think it's the lack of sleep. Ramirez is a no-doubter - forget top 10, he's top 5. Judge's injury probably stops him, although I think he and Sale will be borderline. Kershaw will be out, as will Blackmon, and probablg Goldschmidt. Bryce has been really good for a couple of months now and I think a good last three weeks might just keep him in there. (Darius Austin)
2018-07-30 23:00:00 (link to chat)Wilson, help a brotha out. Forever keeper, 5x5 roto, who wins: Chris Sale for Madison Bumgarner and Blake Snell? Thanks in advance!
(DJosephD from Cranberry )
I love Snell, I don't expect the Rays to push him this year, I'm terrified of Bumgrarner and don't own him anywere. Chris Sale is...King of the Netherlands. He's a cold beer on a hot day. He is Vigo. He's your guy. (Wilson Karaman)
2018-05-04 13:00:00 (link to chat)Aren't the Brewers at least wondering what Hader could do in the rotation? I get it, he's doing well where they have him, but I have a feeling that someday there's going to be a lot of "what could've been" flying around.
(Mr. Fister from Arlington)
I wouldn't be at all surprised if they stretched him out next year. I honestly like this development plan for a guy like him. Chris Sale did the same thing. He's pretty good. (Anthony Rescan)
2017-07-31 23:00:00 (link to chat)I'm in a 7 keeper league with a twist. We have MiLB draft (2/yr) and prospects are "free" keepers for 3 yr. following their promotion. I traded a contender Chris Sale for Xander, Mejia (MiLB controlled) and Bo Bichette (MiLB). I know I gave the best asset, but felt the younger SS keeper and the additional assets will help me in the next 3 yrs. What say you?
(Loria from Milwaukee)
That's not a bad haul, tho for this and many other things in life to make sense, Xander's gonna have to start hitting like Xander again, preferably sooner than later. (Wilson Karaman)
2017-07-19 17:00:00 (link to chat)Yoan Moncada debuts tonight. Is there a small part of you that thinks the Red Sox should have held onto him and Kopech?
(Ryan from St. Louis)
A little bit, sure. Moncada is a marvel of a baseball player - seriously, have you seen his Instagram photos? - and it would've been cool to see him in a Sox uniform. Not as much with Kopech, since throwing 100 with no control is worse than throwing 95 with decent control, and the latter is what half the Red Sox's bullpen currently does. I'll miss Yoan, but every time Chris Sale strikes out 10 over 6 innings, I'll miss him a little bit less. (Brett Cowett)
2017-04-05 23:00:00 (link to chat)What are you hearing about STL SP Jordan Hicks? Have read some very interesting pitch grades from big time sources lately.
(a concerned parent from the internet)
The internet is no place for a concerned parent. Or, let's face it, anybody, really.

Hicks was a dude we chased upside on by tossing into the back of our StL top ten list, and given the muddle of options in that range that's something of an endorsement of the ceiling. Very good fastball, bigtime hook, not much in the way of mechanical consistency or a usable cambio yet. The performance in short-season wasn't great, but lots of raw material there. He'll be a guy to watch in his full-season debut this year.

Also, let me just say that I am thrilled that baseball is back and that Chris Sale is a Red Sox and...just all of it, man. Get 'em, Sandy (Wilson Karaman)
2017-02-16 20:00:00 (link to chat)Following up on your answer to Marty. There has yet to be shown that anything can predict or prevent TJS. The coddling of Joba Chamberlain, a big horse, was a fiasco and everybody predicted that 6'6" bean pole, Chris Sale, and his funny motion, would fall apart. I watched Bob Lemon and Allie Reynolds throw in relief between their starts and go on for years. The question of how much exertion went into the deliveries then versus now is legitimate but it really just looks like luck. The arm falls off or it doesn't.
(oldbopper from New Britain, CT)
It's almost as if there's no "good" mechanics, only aesthetically pleasing ones and aesthetically unpleasing ones.

Knock on wood for your favorite pitcher, friends. (Kate Morrison)
2016-12-01 19:00:00 (link to chat)Which star player, either through trade or through free agency, do you foresee being most likely to join a new club during these winter meetings?
(Jay M from Allegan County, MI)
It looks like Andrew McCutchen right now. Chris Sale is the name who I don't necessarily think will move at the Winter Meetings, but who could move quickly if a bidding war suddenly coalesces. (Mike Gianella)
2016-12-08 23:00:00 (link to chat)Thoughts on Hahn's haul from Boston? Obviously Moncada and Kopech were the names, but it looks like the pale hose got some good depth in that trade, no? I hate to impose, but you think this crowd would dig some Alton Ellis?
(smelmoth from Falmouth)
I knew this moment in the chat would come. Gimme a sec while I collect's some Alton Ellis to tide you over in the mean time...12" style, because that's where I'm at:

So yeah, man, look, let's get one thing straight: I'm *stoked* about this deal as a Red Sox fan. Chris Sale is awesome, and I'll advocate for trading just about anything that's not on a 25-man roster for a bona fide capital-A Ace. On the flip, A+ job, Mr. Hahn. We have lengthy reports on the headliners in our Transaction Analysis linked below, and then yeah, Basabe's a personal favorite. Dude can go GET it in center, good speed that'll age well with his frame and play on the bases, and tantalizing pop. Evaluators are split pretty evenly on the hit tool, but he's shown both an approach and the ability to make adjustments against older competition, so it's a so-far-so-good scenario. And then Diaz is a nice piece of fastball to scratch your lotto ticket with. Here's our whole shebang on the matter: (Wilson Karaman)
2016-11-22 20:00:00 (link to chat)No Victor Robles questions yet, surprising. Do you see him being traded this winter for an arm or they think he is the post Harper star.
(Mike from NY)
Maybe for Chris Sale. Maybe. (Jarrett Seidler)
2016-11-11 13:00:00 (link to chat)Since you just did the NL East: can you build a Mike trout or Chris Sale trade from any NL East team, then stick a number on how likely you think it is to actually happen?
(DTH from SF)
Braves are probably the only team that can do it. I don't think the Phillies have enough arms to deal here.

Swanson/Acuna/Newcomb/Allard probably doesn't get you hung up on (at least for Sale). But Braves aren't really in a position to do this, and probably not interested. (Jeffrey Paternostro)
2016-06-07 12:00:00 (link to chat)I picked up Josh Hader a few weeks ago after seeing his gaudy numbers. He's put up similar numbers all the way up the ladder, and this year in AA the numbers are even better. Do his stuff and ceiling seem to match the numbers, or am I looking at a back-end guy, in your opinion? Cause when I watch video of him, it's hard to not see a little bit of Chris Sale, and his numbers back that up
(lipsgardner from Toilet)
The dangerous thing about Chris Sale comps is you usually end up with Alex Wood. (Jeffrey Paternostro)
2016-06-09 13:00:00 (link to chat)The next BIG prospect nobody is talking about?
(Ed from Pitt)
As much as I don't like the delivery, I don't think we're talking about Josh Hader enough. This could be the next Chris Sale. Probably not THAT good, but man, he's really impressive. (Christopher Crawford)
2016-04-21 19:00:00 (link to chat)Hey Mike thanks for the chat! I know its April and its stupid early! But I have Mike Trout in my AL only, and i currently have 35 Offensive category points and 11 pitching. If this trend continues and I feel confident in the rest of my offense what kind of pitching return could I expect from Trout if i flipped him in may or june. it is a keeper league and he would be $47 to keep next year.
(JP from TX)
You should be able to get an elite arm like Chris Sale for Trout. Obviously, there are a lot of variables in keeper (like contracts and keeper salaries). But shoot for the moon. (Mike Gianella)
2016-03-21 13:00:00 (link to chat)What kind of ceiling do you see for Aaron Nola?
(Nate from Indiana)
Nola's an interesting case, because he's got the command and the breaking ball already, so either he's going to miss bats (in which case he could be a No. 2) or not (in which case he'd still probably be a back-end starter). I think he's sort of in Chris Sale territory with the delivery at this point, where it's still scary-looking, but he's got the flexibility and athleticism to pull it off, so if he hasn't gotten hurt yet, I guess we're going to stop being scared. (Michael Baumann)
2016-02-23 13:00:00 (link to chat)My buddy made this trade in fantasy (with a couple draft picks as well): Bryce Harper and Max Scherzer for Chris Sale, Miguel Sano, Kyle Schwarber and Noah Syndergaard Is he crazy?
(Tommy from Chicago)
If he got the quartet, he won that trade in a friggin' runaway. Unless I don't understand fantasy baseball, which is totally possible. (Matthew Trueblood)
2016-03-03 13:00:00 (link to chat)Two catcher dynasty points league: Chris Sale or Kyle Schwarber?
(doog7642 from Blaine, MN)
Schwarber, I always take the hitter over the pitcher. (Christopher Crawford)
2015-10-06 19:30:00 (link to chat)Perhaps a better question: which teams are going to be the trendy sleeper picks going into next season? I assume CLE will rank high on that list, maybe MIN if they can find some pitching.
(justarobert from Santa Clara)
Yeah, apparently we can't read dates.

Sleeper picks! Does Texas count as a sleeper pick, or does getting Yu Darvish back at some point and having Cole Hamels make them a legitimate choice?- KM

I'll take the Twins. They'll get a lot from Buxton. They're on the rise and could make a splash in a weakened division. -KD

The White Sox? Chris Sale, a full year of Rodon, and they have to hit more, right? - JP (AL Wild Card Game Chat)
2015-07-02 15:00:00 (link to chat)How is it possible for Chris Sale to improve each season? Is he an an alien?
(froglegs_jackson from westeros)
He might just be an alien, so take everything with grains of Martian salt. The big difference this year has been the fastball, which he is actually throwing harder than in the past five years and which he is using as a punchout pitch more often than in the past, with spectacular results. Velo + command = improvement (Doug Thorburn)
2015-06-22 13:00:00 (link to chat)If you're Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer, what are you willing to give up for Chris Sale if he becomes available?
(Ali from Chicago)
My first born. (Jeff Moore)
2015-01-20 19:30:00 (link to chat)Thanks to the internet I no longer know how to value Mookie Betts- I've seen his name being traded for names ranging from Mike Leake to Chris Sale, and everything in between. Can he be the main piece to get Strasburg or does Blake Swihart have to be included in too?
(Shawn from Cubicle)
He's way too good to be dealt for Mike Leake and Chris Sale probably isn't getting moved. I'd imagine Strasburg would require a deal starting with Betts and Swihart, but this offseason has proven once again that I know nothing about trades. As a Sox fan, I hope he isn't dealt now that Stanton is off the table. (Ben Carsley)
2015-01-28 19:00:00 (link to chat)Percentage chance you give on Chris Sale pitching all 2015 without injury to his elbow?
(Myrick from charleston)
I don't like this game. 70%. (Mauricio Rubio)
2015-01-28 19:00:00 (link to chat)I'm going to Chicago in July. My wife has never been there. So of course The Cubs are out of town. Talk me into seeing The White Sox vs. The Royals.
(RotoLando from Cloud City)
Hey man, see who you want but if you get the chance to watch Chris Sale do it, and buy tickets behind home plate. They're pretty cheap and you get a completely different understanding of his slider. It's terrifying. (Mauricio Rubio)
2014-11-18 13:00:00 (link to chat)A new rule has been made that no one who has won MVP or Cy Young before can win it again. Who are your 2015 MVPs and CYs?
(bigguy57 from Philly)
That's an interesting one, bigguy57. Off the top of my head, I'll say Giancarlo Stanton and Jose Abreu win MVP, and Madison Bumgarner and Chris Sale get the Cy Young. (Daniel Rathman)
2014-10-17 12:00:00 (link to chat)What do you think of Christian Colon? He had a nice 2014 and seems like a solid 2b. What do you see his future as and will he get a chance to start for the Royals? Want to know more about him. Thx.
(Cristobal Colon from Pasadena, CA)
A certain segment of Royals fans will always link Colon with Chris Sale, which is a fair standard for the organization, but somewhat unfair for Colon. He impressed team officials by embracing his utility role this season. When the club traded Danny Valencia in July, they said the imperative was getting Colon to the majors. It would make some sense for Colon to get 250-300 at-bats next season as a backup for Omar Infante and a right-handed complement to Mike Moustakas at third base.

But, who knows. (Andy McCullough)
2014-09-25 13:00:00 (link to chat)Hi Craig. Dynasty league question. Want your opinion on a trade. Edwin Encarnacion for Chris Sale and Jose Altuve. Fair trade? Who comes out on top? Who has to add?
(Kris from NY)
Give me the Sale/Altuve side. (Craig Goldstein)
2014-09-03 14:00:00 (link to chat)I was very excited to see the Sox land Rodon. When is he likely to debut? I know it's foolish to ask if he can be Chris Sale good, but he's gonna miss bats, right?
(RJ from Chicago)
Chris Sale is one of the 5 best pitchers in the MLB, so it's hard to compare anyone to him. He's also not exactly a normal profile. Rodon still has a plus, plus slider, and his ultimate upside is a #2 starter. (Jordan Gorosh)
2014-08-06 16:30:00 (link to chat)Is it fair to say Adam Dunn could establish himself as the White Sox frontline ace in the next 2-3 years?
(Me from Somewhere)
He is almost definitely more durable than Chris Sale, so bring it on. At least put him in the bullpen where he can really air it out and showcase his premier stuff. (Cespedes Family BBQ)
2014-08-08 13:00:00 (link to chat)I'm in a 12 team keeper league. each team gets to keep 7 players for next season. who do you think i should keep from this list: George Springer, Bryce Harper, Chris Sale, Justin Upton, Byron Buxton, Addison Russell, Taijuan Walker, Lucas Giolito, Francisco Lindor, Dylan Bundy, Kevin Gausmann, Carlos Correa, Miguel Sano, Zach Wheeler. Thanks.
(childgrambino from Richmond, VA)
Harper, Sale, Upton, Walker, Gausman, Wheeler and Springer. 12 team leagues, you keep guys who are contributing. Having this many prospects in this shallow a league is bananas. Drop a bunch. (Craig Goldstein)
2014-08-08 13:00:00 (link to chat)20 team dynasty league, here are my pitchers: Chris Sale, Sonny Gray, Homey Bailey, Jake Arietta, Jason deGrom, and Mike Leake, with Kimbrel, Doolittle, for saves and a few guys for holds. In a 20 team league, would that be a solid staff? And also, I kinda want to upgrade and have the offensive pieces to do so. If I paired one of those guys with a bat to upgrade, who would you try to sell? Thanks!
(treynay3 from Gatlinburg)
Yeah that's a solid staff though it gets shaky on the back end. I'd move a Bailey/Leake or deGrom for an upgrade. (Craig Goldstein)
2014-08-08 13:00:00 (link to chat)Dynasty league, which side you got? Chris Sale + Kris Bryant + Marcell Ozuna or Gregory Polanco + Anthony Rendon + Christian Yelich
(John Johnson from Wisconsin)
Sale/Bryant/Ozuna on the strength of the first two. (Craig Goldstein)
2014-07-25 14:00:00 (link to chat)What's the deal with Tyler Danish? Are there any comps out there for successful starters with those kind of mechanics?
(Blinky from Maze)
Danish has incredibly short arm action that has a lot of whip to it, along with a very low arm slot. He also has a lot of rock n' roll during the stride phase of his delivery. It is not a totally unique delivery, in the sense that I have seen other amateurs and young pros with similar traits, but he would definitely stand out on a MLB mound - or he might just blend in with a Chicago staff that is led by Chris Sale. (Doug Thorburn)
2014-07-24 19:00:00 (link to chat)Is Justin Upton, Lance Lynn, and Derek Holland a reasonable price for Chris Sale, Joey Gallo, Kenley Jansen, and a top 5-10 prospect pick (assume 2014 draftees)?
(AJ from Phoenix)
I value Sale over Upton by enough to want more in this deal if I'm the Sale side. (Mauricio Rubio)
2014-06-26 14:00:00 (link to chat)Team is bombing...looking to upgrade my keepers in a 5x5 with 5 keepers. Currently have Bogaerts, Tulo, McCutchen, Cargo as definites; can keep either of hosmer/fielder/altuve. Should I upgrade and package for Chris Sale, or a better hitter?
(cxtorpey from Baltimore)
Sorry to hear you've had a tough year. My TDGX team, run by our benevolent boss Bret, is going through the same deal. If you can acquire Sale, I'm all about that. He's one of the rare arms that can anchor a dynasty pitching staff. (J.P. Breen)
2014-05-02 14:00:00 (link to chat)Obvious question, did Chris Sale's mechanics contribute to his injury/strain?
(John from CT)
Impossible to know for sure, though it would be easy to say "yes" based on the premise that his motion puts additional stress on the joints. But given the multitude of factors that contribute to injury, I refuse to pin his injury on his delivery alone. It's ugly, and it definitely poses some risk factors, but it's worth noting that Sale finishes with excellent mechanics at release point - it's the vulture arm action and the imbalance during his stride phase that frightens the children. (Doug Thorburn)
2014-04-29 13:00:00 (link to chat)Given what you've seen to date, and considering it's still only April, who do you think will be in the Series?
(John from CT)
I looked up the staff preseason predictions to see who I had winning the World Series. I chose the Nationals. I also had the Rays and Diamondbacks making the playoffs, and Clayton Kershaw, Mat Latos, and Chris Sale finishing in the top-six of Cy Young voting. So that's a good way to start the chat.

I'll stick with the Nationals for now. In the AL, I'll guess Detroit. (R.J. Anderson)
2014-04-29 13:00:00 (link to chat)What's the insiders buzz regarding Chris Sale? His manager says he thinks he may be back soon and without a minor league tune up. Your take?
(John from CT)
They would know better than me, my man. (R.J. Anderson)
2014-04-08 14:00:00 (link to chat)Is Chris Sale primed for a CY Young caliber season or do you see his funky delivery blowing out his elbow before he gets the chance?
(Wingman from TX)
His delivery is full of risk factors, but injury prediction is a dangerous game given the plethora of variables and the impossibility of knowing about elements such as joint integrity, tendon strength, genetics, conditioning, etc. Performance-wise he is already at or near CY caliber, and though his team's offense might limit the W's, I think that Sale is one of the top pitchers in the AL as long as he is on the mound.

On the jukebox: The Clash, "Charlie Don't Surf" (Doug Thorburn)
2014-03-21 14:00:00 (link to chat)In keeper league would you trade Sano for Chris Sale?
(Jon from LA)
Absolutely. Sano could be a star, but you're getting a guy that is an ace right now. You could just flip Sale for more. (Ronit Shah)
2014-02-28 14:00:00 (link to chat)Doug, is there anything to be done with Chris Sale besides a nightly prayer? Those were some awfully high pitch counts during a season that didn't matter last year.
(Daniel Schoenfeld from Evanston, IL)
There are definitely concerns with his vulture-like arm action and lanky frame, but he is actually very efficient with his delivery from foot strike through release point. High pitch counts do add to the levels of worry, but I think that the baseball public has become hyper-sensitive to pitch counts, especially given the reality that different pitchers can withstand very different thresholds. The perception of 120 pitches creates knee-jerk reactions of panic, but this is not necessarily the case. Sale exceeded 120 pitches three times last year, topping out at 124, and I don't think that's dangerous in and of itself.

On the jukebox: Eminem, "Stan" (Doug Thorburn)
2014-01-29 19:00:00 (link to chat)Welcome Ben, I'll start you off with a curveball: Let's say every draft eligible prospect from 2010 to 2014 was eligible for this year's draft. Just based on pre-draft scouting reports and without the benefit of hindsight, how would the first 10 picks of the draft unfold?
(baseballjunkie from cali, where it's already Spring)
This is an amazingly difficult question to answer, and also quite fun. It's probably better suited for an article than for a fantasy chat answer, but since I was able to access this question ahead of time, here's what I came up with after about 30 min of research. I'll note that since I'm not familiar enough with 2014 prospects yet, I've restricted your search to 2010-2013 draftees. I'll go with:

1. Bryce Harper 2. Manny Machado 3. Gerrit Cole 4. Dylan Bundy 5. Anthony Rendon 6. Jameson Taillon 7. Bubba Starling
8. Byron Buxton 9. Carlos Correa 10. Archie Bradley

Toughest omissions for me were Francisco Lindor, Trevor Bauer, Kevin Gausman, Kris Bryant and Mark Appel. If Luc Giolito had been healthy for his senior year, he'd probably have made it on this list. Obviously that's not how we'd rank them now, and it's funny that guys like Chris Sale, Jose Fernandez, Matt Harvey and Javier Baez are left in the dust. Bubba Starling sticks out like a sore thumb, and Buxton was underrated. This exercise also reinforces how loaded the 2011 draft was. Last year's pales in comparison. (Ben Carsley)
2014-01-02 13:00:00 (link to chat)Do you know anyone who thinks Chris Sale can prevent his arm from flying off his shoulder in the future? And does the general injury sqeaumishness related to his delivery present an exploitable opportunity for owners to draft/acquire through trade at a lower price?
(TommyC from Rosemont)
I think it can be exploitable. The arm action worries me, though at some point one acknowledges that it's working for now. I do think injury gets him at some point, but that can be said for most any pitcher. (Craig Goldstein)
2013-11-25 13:00:00 (link to chat)If you were Rick Hahn would you trade Chris Sale?
(Justin from Chicago, IL)
It's easy for me to say, but I don't see the talent to compete at the major league level, and I'd rather move Sale a few years too early than a few years too late. I'd move him for near major league ready talent with impact potential. (Jason Parks)
2013-11-26 13:00:00 (link to chat)Where does Chris Sale rank if you are measuring trade value of SP? Would you still be concerned about his motion even after two full seasons? Will that concern ever disappear?
(petelunchbox from Handsome City)
I'd say he has plenty of value, given his age, success and the friendly nature of his contract. I am less concerned about his delivery than most people it seems, and, no, I don't ever expect to stop hearing this question. (Harry Pavlidis)
2013-09-11 13:00:00 (link to chat)Chris Sale's slider an 80 pitch?
(djs711 from Chicago)
70-grade at the very least, but there's an argument for 80. (Jason Cole)
2013-07-08 14:00:00 (link to chat)At what point do people admit they were wrong about Chris Sale and that his mechanics, while not ideal, work for him?
(Max from Westeros)
It's not so much that "people were wrong" about Sale's mechanics, as it is possible that both A) he is inefficient and B) it works for him. Beyond the scary-looking stuff with his limbs, Sale also has poor balance and a misdirected stride, which both create barriers to repetition. I am very impressed that he has been able to harness that delivery and overcome the obstacles, as it speaks very well to his development skills and learning curve, but he is still a risky proposition going forward (from both an injury standpoint and performance). Many pitchers improve these elements as they age, and I would like to think that Sale will continue to improve while keeping some of his signature style.

On the jukebox: Danzig, "Twist of Cain" (Doug Thorburn)
2013-05-16 13:00:00 (link to chat)Have your thoughts on Chris Sale changed? Do you think he can stay healthy? True #1 potential?
(Justin from Chicago, IL)
My thoughts haven't actually changed. I just admitted I was wrong. I still question his long-term durability based on his physical and mechanical profiles. I'll probably end up being wrong again. (Jason Parks)
2013-05-07 13:00:00 (link to chat)In a dynasty league in which I'm competing, but I'm weak at SP, I can trade 2 prospect picks, Gerrit Cole, & Brian McCann for Chris Sale and Alex Cobb. I'm leaning no because I lurve me some Cole. Still, I have Carlos Santana, and with Josh Johnson, Halladay, & Haren all disappointing, I could use the help (Rest of staff is Medlen, Moore, Gallardo, Wainwright, and CC). Should I pull the trigger?
(Jim Clancy from Exhibition Stadium)
I love Cole, too, but if you're in contention to win this year, you do the deal. Prospect love kills folks in these leagues bc they get married to endless cycle of the future and then they want to compete now and have future assets. Just focus on now. I'd do the deal. (Paul Sporer)
2013-03-15 13:00:00 (link to chat)Pedro Strop's fastball had great armside movement last night. Who has the best tail on their fastball in the majors?
(Matt from Chicago)
I think Chris Sale. Fernando Rodney for the relievers. Check out our leader board tool, use the HMOV sort (keep in mind Tampa's PFX system is a little off so their lefties seem to get extra tail) (Harry Pavlidis)
2013-03-12 13:00:00 (link to chat)Are you concerned about Chris Sale's mechanics?
(Mike from Rhode Island)
Shaggy from Scooby Doo has got some very negative indicators. Doug Thorburn does a great job discussing the mechanics in the SP Guide. (Paul Sporer)
2013-02-19 13:00:00 (link to chat)Hi Ben, Love the podcast! Was offered Kemp for my Chris Sale in a weekly h2h points league. Accept? Thanks, Brian
(brianincbus from Cape Coral, FL)
Yes. Sale scares me even a little more than most pitchers, which is already a lot. Kemp averaged 159 games in the four seasons before 2012, so I'm not too down on his durability yet. (Ben Lindbergh)
2013-03-01 13:00:00 (link to chat)How many starts until Chris Sale explodes (in a bad way)?
(Max from LA)
It's impossible to tell. His delivery is full of injury red flags, but there are player-specific variables when it comes to conditioning and genetics that ultimately play a bigger role than is often acknowledged. Perhaps he has the structural stability to support his motion for years, though I would hedge my bets. But then again, I never thought that Jake Peavy's elbow would survive as long as it did, but his structural integrity in the joint allowed him to pitch for years, and when his arm did give out it was actually his shoulder that broke down (indicating a weakness relative to the elbow).

On the jukebox: Anthrax, "Only" (Doug Thorburn)
2013-03-01 13:00:00 (link to chat)Which players mechanics worry you the most?
(Henry from bar)
The easy answer is Chris Sale, and it's a legitimate concern. I also worry about Tyler Skaggs, Wily Peralta, and Mike Fiers for various reasons. (Doug Thorburn)
2013-02-14 13:00:00 (link to chat)How do you see my transition into the rotation going?
(Aroldis Chapman from Warming Up)
Not as well as most. I want it to go brilliantly like Chris Sale's, but I keep coming back to a 4.00 ERA and a ton of Ks. (Paul Sporer)
2012-12-28 13:00:00 (link to chat)As a native chicagoan, It's almost embarassing what the White Sox have done(or not done) this offseason. Spent waaaay too much on a player coming off a surprising all-around year, but needs a platoon-mate to be successful and has little-to-no-power in his bat. Is this the dreaded "R-word"(rebuilding) that Kenny Williams hinted about but always managed to avoid?
(jlarsen from chicago)
Williams could try to rebuild, but I'm not sure how. Off the top of my head, he's got Dayan Viciedo and Chris Sale as somewhat established players who theoretically haven't reached their prime. I'm not sure those are foundational guys, but they aren't bad. Then again, I don't ever dismiss Williams, who has enjoyed a great deal of success by doing things that baffle me. Someone should write a book and/or movie about him. (Geoff Young)
2012-11-09 14:00:00 (link to chat)Talk about Chris Sale's mechanics. Any long-term concerns?
(nickkappel from Iowa)
Sale has frightening mechanics, due to a potentially lethal combination of extreme hyperabduction of the shoulders, extreme scapular load, and the tendency to drag the elbow as he gets into maximum external rotation of the throwing arm. Perhaps he has the functional strength to withstand the risk factors, and I can't speak to his conditioning work, but his mechanical profile is full of injury red flags. The lack of balance is also a concern, again relating to his ability to repeat the delivery, but thus far he has overcome all of the barriers to find a consistent release point, which does speak well to his underlying strength indicators. He might be ok in the short term, but I would downgrade his status in a fantasy keeper league due to the risks inherent in his motion.

On the jukebox: AFI, "The Leaving Song, Part 2" (Doug Thorburn)
2012-08-17 13:00:00 (link to chat)Is Chris Sale having the year Matt Moore was supposed to have?
(Omar Little from Baltimore)
Chris Sale is having a year that nobody is *supposed* to have. You just put enough good players in a room together and wait for one to do something incredible. Sale might be the sexiest expected starter in the AL right now. (Sam Miller)
2012-06-29 13:00:00 (link to chat)Is Chris Sale this insanely good or will this season be the outlier of his career?
(Paul from DC)
Oh, and on the 4th of July beer question, no idea what my plans are yet but a good guess is something from the Six Point line (Sweet Action or Crisp).

As for Chris Sale, I'll go with outlier, as I have a hard time imagining he can maintain a .257 BABIP forever, and I don't think he'll be striking out more than a batter per inning forever as well. Still, he's having a hell of a year and I hope he can remain healthy. (Jay Jaffe)
2012-05-25 14:00:00 (link to chat)Do you think Chris Sale's condor-like mechanics will lead to a major elbow injury before the season is over? And is keeping him in the rotation better, from an injury-prevention perspective, than having him in the bullpen?
(Nick from Michigan)
There is no telling when a pitcher's body might succumb to the kinetic toll, but Sale's delivery is certainly high-risk and his frame suggests fragility. The rotation vs. bullpen question is a good one, because the debate goes deeper than innings-counts. That said, I think that the Sox do have more flexibility with his usage patterns out of the bullpen as opposed to falling slave to the 5-day routine of starting (Doug Thorburn)
2012-05-17 13:00:00 (link to chat)Keeper League...looking to move LaHair for some SP. Who would be some of your favorite mid-level starters to target right now? Points league with emphasis on ERA/quality starts. Always looking for upside but need current yr production as well.
(David from San Diego)
Maybe try Brandon Morrow, Anibal Sanchez, Jordan Zimmermann, Jake Arrieta, and Chris Sale. (Derek Carty)
2012-05-09 13:00:00 (link to chat)Chris Sale, who's been very effective as a starter, is supposedly heading back to the pen because of a sore elbow. Over reaction by the White Sox or simple prudence?
(Paul from DC)
Prudence, but disappointing nonetheless. Some guys can handle every aspect of starting but staying healthy. Maybe Sale is one of them--the Sox would know far better than I. I hope he gets another crack at the rotation at some point, since he clearly has the stuff to succeed there, but "better safe than sorry" isn't a bad rule of thumb when it comes to pitching prospects and first-round picks. (Ben Lindbergh)
2012-04-04 13:00:00 (link to chat)Fantasy Question: In a dynasty league I can send Chris Sale, Banuelos and Bubba Starling, and cash for BJ Upton and two 1st round draft picks (which are like gold in this league). I rebuilt my team and have an OF of Trout-Gary Brown- Harper (we use LF, CF, RF), and my pitching is stacked to the point where Sale and ManBan wouldn't make my 5-man rotation. Is the trade worth it, or is Starling > my expectations suggest?
(Don H. from Oak Park)
Fantasy Question: Todd Bridges or Gary Coleman? I have a keeper league and I can only protect one of them. (Jason Parks)
2012-04-04 13:00:00 (link to chat)You are an animal! Do you think Chris Sale can become a successful starting pitcher? If so, what is his upside?
(Dennis from LA)
I prefer him in the 'pen because of his delivery and his arsenal. He has tremendous upside because he has very good stuff, but as I said, I don't see it staying consistent in a rotation over the course of a full-season. (Jason Parks)
2012-02-14 13:00:00 (link to chat)Daniel Bard, Neftali Feliz, and Chris Sale are all moving from the 'pen to the rotation this season. Optimistic on the triumvirate, or should I have concerns (own them all in a keeper)?
(Mitch from cubicle 3s)
I'm actually fairly high on all three, especially if you have them cheap in a keeper league. They all have excellent numbers in relief (excepting Feliz's 2011) and could easily withstand the traditional 17% drop (as per Tom Tango's rule of thumb) of moving to the rotation. I also think each is well-equipped enough to make such a transition, each with at least three pitches to show batters. None should be counted on for high inning totals, but in terms of performance, I think they'll do about as well as you'd expect. (Derek Carty)

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