When you’ve lost four straight games, you need someone on the mound to come up big and end that streak. A “stopper”, as some prefer to call such pitchers—who often tend to be the ace of a staff.
For the Boston Red Sox, Chris Sale is that ace.
Facing a sweep and fifth straight loss at the hands of the Seattle Mariners Wednesday afternoon, Sale said ‘Not so fast!’ as he fired seven scoreless frames in Boston’s 4-0 victory at Safeco Field. He allowed just three hits, one free pass, and punched out 11.
One quick note about the game—is that Rafael Devers launched a home run for his first Major League hit. The rookie connected for a solo shot off Andrew Moore to lead off the third inning. Devers, the 20-year-old third baseman, was Boston’s top prospect prior to his call-up on Monday. He had been hitting .311/.377/.578 with 20 homers and 60 RBIs in the minors this season (77 games in AA, nine in AAA).
With the win, Sale improved to 13-4 on the season as his ERA dropped to 2.37. His Major League-leading strikeout total increased to 211 as he’s now on pace for 332. This would be the most in the majors since Randy Johnson when he struck out 334 in 2002 for the Arizona Diamondbacks. His teammate, Curt Schilling, recorded 316 the same year.
Pedro Martinez holds the Red Sox’s single-season strikeout record with 313 in 1999.
Wednesday’s outing was Sale’s third straight scoreless start, and fourth in his last five times out (sixth overall). It’s also the 14th time he’s recorded 10 or more strikeouts this year. That means he’s done that in exactly two-thirds of his starts, as he’s made a total of 21. (Max Scherzer is second in the majors with 12 10+ strikeout games—has 19 less strikeouts than Sale in one less start.)
Since June 15, Sale is 5-2 in eight starts with a 1.41 ERA and 13.34 strikeouts-per-nine (12.80 overall). So he’s been on fire particularly lately, kind of like the way he was in April when he had a 1.19 ERA in five starts. The difference now—is he’s finally getting run support (12 of his 13 wins have come since May).
Sale currently leads the American League in wins, ERA, and strikeouts. The last (and first) Red Sox pitcher to win the Triple Crown was none other than Martinez in 1999. Since then, only two AL pitchers have accomplished the feat (Johan Santana in 2006, Justin Verlander in 2011).
Across the majors, only Clayton Kershaw (15) has more wins than Sale and only two (Kershaw- 2.04, Scherzer- 2.26) have better ERAs. Kershaw just hit the DL for “four-to-six” weeks a few days ago though. This helps increase Sale’s chances of leading the majors—let alone the AL—in all three Triple Crown categories. That’s been done twelve times in Major League history (six in each league), with the latest occurrence being Santana in 2006. A slim chance of that happening for Sale, but anything’s possible.
It’s pretty obvious that Sale is the favorite for the AL Cy Young award this year—doesn’t even really need to be said. Assuming he wins, it will be the first time the Red Sox have back-to-back Cy Young winners since 1999/2000 when Martinez won each year. The last AL team to win it in consecutive seasons were the Cleveland Indians in 2007/2008 (C.C. Sabathia/Cliff Lee).
Who’s been a better off-season pickup across the majors than Sale? It’s hard to say. He’s been everything for the Red Sox and then some—hard to imagine where they’d be without him.
Boston leaves Seattle with a 56-47 record on the season, leading the Yankees by one game in the AL East (have one less loss than the Red Sox). After a day off on Thursday, the Red Sox will resume play Friday night with a three-game home set against the Kansas City Royals.
Sale’s next scheduled start is August 1 against the Indians at Fenway Park, his first start of the year against Cleveland. A previous seven-year AL Central division rival, he’s 6-5 with a 4.07 ERA in his career against them (27 games, 16 starts).
Red Sox Take Game 2 in 2018 MLB World Series
Last night in the 2018 MLB World Series, it was game 2 between the Boston Red Sox and the Los Angeles Dodgers. After 9 1/2 innings, the Boston Red Sox defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers 4-2.
it was David Price (BOS) going up against Hyun-Jin Ryu (LAD) on the pitching mound.
In six innings of the world series, David Price had an ERA of 3.00 with 3 hits and 2 runs and zero home runs.
On the LA Dodgers side, Hyun-Jin Ryu was the pitcher for the Dodgers. He only lasted 4.2 innings with 6 hits and 4 runs but zero home runs.
Game 3 is set for Friday, October 26, 2018 at 8:06 on Fox
Yankees, Red Sox Negotiating London 2-Game Series
The New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox are closing in on an agreement to play a two-game series in London in June 2019, according to Bloomberg’s Janet Perkins and Scott Soshnick.
Reportedly the games will be held at London Stadium, which played host to several events at the 2012 Summer Olympics, if a deal is made official.
The stadium can hold up to 65,000 fans for sporting events and if a deal is made official it will continue MLB’s trend of playing regular season games in other countries such as Japan, Mexico, Australia and Puerto Rico over the years.
The Yankees and Red Sox are easily among the top MLB franchises in terms of global recognition and their storied rivalry and rosters of elite players will be an easy draw for the series as MLB looks to penetrate the European market.
It could also present quite the online betting opportunity for both US and European betting sites, especially as the series kicks off. When it does, this LVbet bonus code could come in handy, especially if it will be the first time you try your hand at something like this.
“We would love to participate in a series in London against the Yankees but this is a decision that MLB and the MLBPA will make,” Red Sox CEO Sam Kennedy said.
Bloomberg reported the games would be played at London Stadium, which was the main facility for the 2012 summer Olympics. MLB has not played any games in Europe before, however, the Red Sox have played overseas in the past, including to Japan before the 2008 season.
“It’s a shorter trip than to California, right?” Yankees Manager Aaron Boone, who has never been to London, commented. “Let’s get the royal family out there. Maybe the queen can make an appearance.”
“It’s following the leader — the N.F.L.,” said Allen Adamson, a branding expert and an adjunct professor at N.Y.U. “It’s good for the Yankees, it’s good for Boston, and an attempt to inject some topspin into the sport, but I don’t think it mitigates the need to revitalize baseball in the United States.”
Adamson added: “It would be more interesting to play in Havana.”
The Yankees are in a business partnership with Manchester City F.C, so they are very familiar with the European sports landscape and the audience, and fans, that attend events across the pond.
MLB is trying to follow in the NFL’s footsteps, as both are chasing the NBA who have spearheaded the efforts to globalize their game.
The Waiting Game Continues For The Red Sox And JD Martinez
The Boston Red Sox haven’t made any significant roster moves this offseason with Spring Training less than a month away. Sure, they’ve revamped their coaching staff and have a new manager, but as far as players go? No new names; essentially the same roster as 2017.
A good way to describe Boston’s offseason would be the sound of crickets chirping.
However, things could change at any moment for the Red Sox and president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski. He’s waited this long; he can wait a little longer. Everyone knows that there’s only one man Dombrowski’s after; and that is- of course- free agent slugger JD Martinez.
According to ESPN’s Buster Olney this afternoon, the Red Sox have offered Martinez a deal “in the range” of five years at $100 million.
Source: Boston's offer to J.D. Martinez is in the range of five years, $100 million.
— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) January 17, 2018
At the start of the offseason, Martinez’s asking price was reportedly in the range of $200 million; Boston’s offer is half of that.
Boston needs a power bat in their lineup, and Martinez fills that void. The Red Sox finished fourth-to-last in the majors and last in the American League with 168 homers in 2017, a year that saw MLB set a new record with 6,105 dingers; it was also the first time since 1993 that the Red Sox finished last in the AL in homers. A total power outage!
Long story short, Dombrowski needs to acquire Martinez. Considering he’s yet to make a move to respond to the New York Yankees landing Giancarlo Stanton, the pressure is starting to build up for Dombrowski to show Martinez the money.
Martinez, 30, recently said he’s willing to wait until Spring Training to sign a deal with a new club.
The 6’3” Martinez bashed 45 homers in just 432 at-bats in 2017- one every less than 10 at-bats to go along with 104 RBIs. Not even a full season! His slash line was .303/.376/.690 split between the Detroit Tigers and Arizona Diamondbacks. Had Martinez finished with enough plate appearances to qualify, he all but certainly would’ve finished first in MLB in slugging percentage and OPS.
Those type of numbers in a contract year? Nothing but basic economics; that’s how you get PAID!
If Dombrowski doesn’t land Martinez- and assuming no blockbuster trade will be made before the season starts- it will be a wasted offseason for the Red Sox. They’ll have the same mediocre lineup which isn’t good enough to win in October. There will be no Stanton, no Carlos Santana, or no Eric Hosmer for that matter. Those three weren’t good enough for Dombrowski this offseason, and so Martinez is what’s left- not counting other current free agents like Lorenzo Cain, Mike Moustakas, and Todd Frazier- none of whom are on Dombrowski’s radar.
The time is now for Dombrowski to make a move. And by move, I mean sign Martinez. He’s in the prime of his career, made for Fenway Park, and made to give a lackluster Red Sox offense a spark that it so badly needs.
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