Back in the day, whenever Pedro Martinez got lit up, I figured the opposing team was up to some bullshit. Like they stumbled upon his secret diaries or hired some local sorority girl to ply him with vodka and get him to cough up a weakness. Whenever Pedey stepped to the hill, you expected nothing but fear and loathing from opposing batters, and strikeouts across the board.
I feel the same way about Chris Sale. Seeing him tie batters up in knots and make the sultaniest of swingers look like high school amateurs has been one of this season’s purest pleasures. Whenever he gets manhandled, I suspect foul play.
Last night, Sale took another beating at the hands of the Cleveland Indians, giving up seven runs on seven hits in just three innings. In his two starts against them this season, Sale is 0-1 with a 14.63 ERA.
Clearly this is beyond coincidence, and it’s alarming on a scale of the Rebel Alliance getting the plans to the Death Star. If everything plays out the way me and my beer think it will, the Sox will most certainly be looking to get through Cleveland in the 2017 ALDS. Last year, this did not work out so well. This year, we’ve added the American League’s best pitcher to our arsenal… but the Indians have seemed to have found a workaround. Is he tipping pitches? Are they reading his mind? Did the Cleveland front office call up every girlfriend in his past to build a sizable dossier on his most embarrassing secrets?
It’s not likely anyone’s gonna find the answers, but it’s something that has to be addressed. Especially when Doug Fister is shutting down the exact same offense on one hit.
The good news is, he’s got some time to figure it out. And I can’t imagine a guy like Sale lets two swift beatings pass in his rear view mirror. He’ll likely spend September chewing nails while staring at photos of the Cleveland batters, conjuring fates far worse than anything I can describe here.
Also, he’s Chris Sale, destroyer of offenses and bringer of destruction. Don’t sleep on that last point.