The Red Sox and ace Chris Sale have agreed to an agreement on a contract extension that would keep him in Boston long-term.
The deal is for 5 years and $145 million.
Sale has spent two years in Boston and he’s been very open about how much he has enjoyed his time here in this city. Prior to becoming a member of the Boston Red Sox, the dominant lefty was a member of the Chicago White Sox who saw very little success during his time with the organization, missing the postseason each year.
Following the 2016 season, the Red Sox added Sale via trade with a package that made some fans of the team cringe due to the players involved. The team sent Chicago the then, number one prospect in baseball, Yoan Moncada and top pitching prospect, Michael Kopech.
Since joining the team, Sale has made two trips to the postseason. One of those trips included winning the 2018 World Series Championship in which he closed out the final game, sending Manny Machado literally to his knees.
Sale has also been the American League All-Star team’s starting pitcher in both seasons.
While he has been one of the most dominant pitchers in the game and, just like every other season, is consistently one of the top candidates for that elusive Cy Young Award, there has been cause for concern.
In 2018, Sale missed a good chunk of the second half of the season with left shoulder inflammation which remained a nagging injury up until the postseason. Following the all-star break, he’d only make seven more appearances in the regular season.
Regardless of the injury, the Red Sox seem confident that this shoulder issue is a thing of the past and believe that he’s healed up and ready to dominate another year in the bigs.
His stats have been outstanding during his time with the Red Sox posting a 2.90 ERA in 2017, and 2.11 ERA in 2018.
Sale is due to become a free agent following the 2019 season.
If the Red Sox believe that he’s healthy and they’re confident enough to stick with Sale long term, this is a move that I am totally on board with. While I do believe that it would have been a smart move to hold off until free agency following this season to simply see how his shoulder holds up, Sale has shown year after year that he is one of the most feared pitchers in the game and when healthy, he’s shown zero signs of slowing down.
Chris Sale loves it here in Boston. And Boston loves Chris Sale. It’s been a match made in heaven that appears to be making a long-term commitment.