August 1, 2018

Sale, On DL With Mild Shoulder Inflammation, Says "I'm Not Worried About It At All"

Chris Sale was put on the 10-day disabled list yesterday with mild inflammation in his left shoulder.

Obviously, this is disconcerting, even though the Red Sox have a better record this year when Sale is not pitching.
Red Sox With Sale:     14- 8, .636
Red Sox Without Sale:  61-26, .701
I am confident that the Red Sox are exercising an extraordinary amount of caution in this case. Sure, there could be something wrong, but we have seen or heard no indication of troubles - and Sale has been remarkable over his last six starts: 0.23 ERA, allowing only one run in 39 innings.

Brian Johnson will start in Sale's place tomorrow night against the Yankees. Sale expects to start against the Blue Jays on August 7.
I was pretty upset when the final decision was made. At the end of the day though, I've got to do what's best for not only the team but myself. I don't think me going out there not at 100 percent is going to help us. I think if I did go out there, I'd probably risk something more severe that wouldn't do any good, either. ... I don't like it at all. I'm a pitcher that pitches. I don't like sitting on the sidelines watching somebody else do my job for me. ...

Over the last couple starts, just kind of normal soreness, then in the same general areas it was just a little bit more than I'm used to after a start. It just kind of built up over the last couple outings. I said something and they, you know, said they wanted to give it a little bit more time. ...

I'm not too worried about this. ... I'm very optimistic that this is going to be a very short stint on the DL. But, you know, with it being the DL, people get kind of antsy. But I'm not worried about it at all.
Buzzkill Pauley's take at SoSH seems highly plausible:
The Sox are gaming the system to give Sale a break. I am 100% sure that every MLB pitcher's throwing shoulder has some measurable chronic inflammation at this time of year. As Sale and DDski said, if the standings were different he’s be taking the ball.

IMO, the opponent being the MFYs has much less to do with the timing of this DL trip than does the presence of two off-days within the ten days of Sale's DL-minimum.

Essentially, the Sox can give Sale a week off from throwing and still give all the other starters an extra day of rest.

I wholeheartedly approve this approach to saving key pitchers for the offseason, and hope they take the same approach with Porcello later on this month after the damn double-header with the O's, quite frankly. Price could probably use one, too, but he already got a short breather due to the rainout.

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