Chris Sale 2020 - TJ Bound and Down

OurF'ingCity

Well-Known Member
Gold Supporter
SoSH Member
Apr 22, 2016
4,129
New York City
Sale is quickly entering "Pedroia territory" where I just expect him to constantly be dealing with some degree of injury ranging from "season-ending, needs surgery" to "trying his best to play through the pain." Crazy that we still have 5 years of his deal.
 

sean1562

Member
SoSH Member
Sep 17, 2011
2,805
so has he not actually been throwing during the offseason? Doesn’t this seem like an incredibly expected and obvious result? If Sale needs TJ they should honestly just go full fire sale and trade anything that isn’t directly connected to the next core. See what you can get for jdm, Bradley, workman, and maybe even ERod.
 

BigSoxFan

Member
SoSH Member
May 31, 2007
34,655
Thanks for the Machado K moment but good grief. What a moronic contract extension decision.
 

Smiling Joe Hesketh

All Hail King Boron
Dope
May 20, 2003
30,934
Deep inside Muppet Labs
I mean, while Sale's contract may have been less than smart Mookie wanted $250m more. I don't think it was one or the other and they picked Sale over Mookie.
One led to the other. They gave Sale his money and 18 months later they're suddenly concerned about payroll flexibility.

Anyway, this was all utterly predictable the moment the extension was signed. This guy hadn't finished out any season strong and he's built like a willow reed and his motion is awful. Of course he was gonna blow out the elbow, it was only a matter of time.

Everything this team has done since winning the World Series has been wrong, which is pretty remarkable.

If Sale needs UCL then just punt this season.
 

Salem's Lot

Andy Moog! Andy God Damn Moog!
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
7,211
Gallows Hill
One led to the other. They gave Sale his money and 18 months later they're suddenly concerned about payroll flexibility.

Anyway, this was all utterly predictable the moment the extension was signed. This guy hadn't finished out any season strong and he's built like a willow reed and his motion is awful. Of course he was gonna blow out the elbow, it was only a matter of time.

Everything this team has done since winning the World Series has been wrong, which is pretty remarkable.

If Sale needs UCL then just punt this season.
I just think they used payroll flexibility as a buzzword for them scoffing at the idea of paying a single player $400 million bucks. Their opinion would probably be the same if they didn’t re-sign Sale or Eovaldi.
 

JCizzle

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 11, 2006
10,792
I know they're planning to use an opener for one of the five turns, but filling four starting spots with Sale/Eovaldi seemed awfully optimistic. We might end up with two healthy starters by the end of April. Hopefully ERod doesn't trip again before the season starts, yeesh.
 

johnnywayback

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 8, 2004
1,191
One led to the other. They gave Sale his money and 18 months later they're suddenly concerned about payroll flexibility.
This just doesn't follow, though. They didn't pay Mookie what he wanted because they didn't think he was worth that much, not because they couldn't afford it.

Now, if you want to argue that Sale and Mookie are related because the immediate failure of the Sale extension was a good reminder that it can be a crippling mistake to overpay even elite players, well, I can't argue with that.
 

pokey_reese

Member
SoSH Member
Jun 25, 2008
13,784
Eugene, OR
Well, that really sucks. Watching a healthy Chris Sale would have gone a long way towards making this team more fun, to say nothing of more competitive in the standings. Unlike other years, there isn't even some lotto ticket arm that I can be excited about taking his rotation slot. Maybe Darwinzon? Blah.
 

JCizzle

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 11, 2006
10,792
This just doesn't follow, though. They didn't pay Mookie what he wanted because they didn't think he was worth that much, not because they couldn't afford it.

Now, if you want to argue that Sale and Mookie are related because the immediate failure of the Sale extension was a good reminder that it can be a crippling mistake to overpay even elite players, well, I can't argue with that.
I thought the inability to sign Mookie argument was tied to the baseball related luxury tax penalties (eg draft pick losses), which are a direct result of the pitching investments. They couldn't pay him fair market value this year because of the need to reset the tax, not that he isn't worth a long term contract?
 

Melrose Diner

Member
SoSH Member
Feb 11, 2020
54
My off the cuff reaction to this is that this could be the worst pitching staff we've seen the Red Sox put out in a long, long time. It's also a huge bummer that payroll management incompetence is wasting prime, cheap years of Benintendi and Devers, especially since there's no reason to have much faith that they'll stick around past their contract final year.

Upon review 2015 was pretty awful, though that season had a pretty decent combined season from E-Rod + Clay.
 
Last edited:

Mueller's Twin Grannies

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 19, 2009
6,231
Can they hire Dombrowski again just to fire him again?

I'm very appreciative for the title, but the dude did pretty much exactly what people predicted (leaving the team worse off than when he inherited it) AND gave out one of the worst contracts in franchise history in the process, one that has already crippled this team for 2020 and cost them, at least in part, the best player they've had since who knows when, a guy who may not come back until his prime is gone, if ever.

They should have just made him the closer, because he can't pitch 6 innings consistently anymore. His delivery sucks, he's too thin, and every other guy who has ever had that combination has broken down around the same age or so. I cannot believe this franchise was so stupid.
 
Last edited:

Bob Montgomerys Helmet Hat

has big, douchey shoulders
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
My off the cuff reaction to this is that this could be the worst pitching staff we've seen the Red Sox put out in a long, long time. It's also a huge bummer that payroll management incompetence is wasting prime, cheap years of Benintendi and Devers, especially since there's no reason to have much faith that they'll stick around past their contract final year.
There is actually no reason to think that they won't.
 

Melrose Diner

Member
SoSH Member
Feb 11, 2020
54
There is actually no reason to think that they won't.
Could go either way I guess. What happens if they win 75 games this year and Henry gives Bloom an edict to go out and sign a high profile free agent or two to make up some lost PR and then three years from now we have the same discussion about how they're up against the luxury tax?

Sorry, I know it's a Sale thread. Just a huge bummer
 

DeadlySplitter

Member
SoSH Member
Oct 20, 2015
20,752
Eovaldi deal was goofy but felt good at the time. sentimentality is a bitch.

with the zero pitching depth and Sale amenable to a bargain rate when healthy, they had to take this risk on his deal.
 

Harry Hooper

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Jan 4, 2002
26,939
Sale is quickly entering "Pedroia territory" where I just expect him to constantly be dealing with some degree of injury ranging from "season-ending, needs surgery" to "trying his best to play through the pain." Crazy that we still have 5 years of his deal.
Given Sale's personality, if he can't pitch maybe there's a non-zero chance he might retire early? Talk about making chicken salad out of...
 

Dewey'sCannon

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 18, 2005
689
Maryland
I wonder when/where he's getting the MRI. In Ft. Myers, or are they sending him straight to Dr. Andrews (in Alabama, I think)?
 
Aug 11, 2019
387
This is less shocking to me than Pedroia not being able to play in a ST game.
You are shocked that Pedroia cannot play in spring training this hear? He played three games at 2nd base in 2018 and he played four games there last year (only three complete) and DH'ed in two games. ANd to boot, he is currently 36 years, 6 months, 2 weeks, and 1 day old. Do you think he's suddenly going to bounce back and be a full-time player after averaging 83 games a year over his past six seasons?
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

Found no thrill on Blueberry Hill
SoSH Member
Sep 9, 2008
28,716
AZ
New manager, no Mookie very thin starting pitching. Pending league investigation. What a shit off season.

If they really just decided to throw in their hand, what would that look like and what could they achieve?

You are shocked that Pedroia cannot play in spring training this hear?
Slow down. Read. Think. Breathe. I understand that we're disappointed in both the Pedroia and Sale situations but that's not a reason to let our critical reasoning and sarcasm meters get screwed up.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 23, 2009
12,078
Maine
He should have had TJ surgery last summer.
Did you see the scans and test results on his elbow last summer, doctor? If not, then I don't think you can say whether he should or shouldn't have had surgery. Surgery is a last resort option, not the first choice. Especially if the doctors examining the injury don't believe surgery is necessary. Doctor freaking Andrews looked at him last summer and said surgery wasn't needed. That's all the confirmation I need. Hindsight 8 months later doesn't and shouldn't change that diagnosis.
 

OurF'ingCity

Well-Known Member
Gold Supporter
SoSH Member
Apr 22, 2016
4,129
New York City
If they really just decided to throw in their hand, what would that look like and what could they achieve?
At this point, they may still be better off holding their pieces until closer to the deadline when (a) we will have more info about Sale's status specifically and the talent level of this team more generally and (b) teams generally get a bit more desperate to all bullpen pieces, etc.
 

johnnywayback

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 8, 2004
1,191
I thought the inability to sign Mookie argument was tied to the baseball related luxury tax penalties (eg draft pick losses), which are a direct result of the pitching investments. They couldn't pay him fair market value this year because of the need to reset the tax, not that he isn't worth a long term contract?
Nope! Two separate issues.

One, the 2020 tax situation. Caused by a lot of factors, the pitching investments among them. If they had kept Mookie for his walk year, or signed him to an extension, they could have solved this problem by dumping Price/JBJ/etc.

Two, Mookie's impending free agency. He believed, rightly, that other teams might value him more highly than the Red Sox do. So he refused to sign a generous extension offer -- one that reflected the team's very high, but not Trout-high, valuation.

Again, if he'd signed that extension, or been willing to negotiate something closer to the Red Sox' valuation than to what he can get on the open market, he'd still be here, and they'd have happily dealt with the 2020 tax some other way. But he wasn't. And the team wasn't willing to pay him more than their valuation. So they traded him. And one of the things they got back in return for trading him now was the ability to subsidize some of Price's contract and get extra prospect capital back as they got under the tax.

I really hope this doesn't turn into a Jay Payton "why'd he sign here?" kind of thing. The facts of the situation are pretty clear.
 

lexrageorge

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 31, 2007
9,992
this is what I do not understand. Why did they wait all offseason for this? Was the plan really just “give him time and cross your fingers come spring training”? Def leads more credence to the idea thAt lack of confidence in his health contributed to the push to trade mookie
TJS is not something that should be taken lightly. John Lackey returned strong; Anderson Espinoza still hasn't thrown a pitch since his TJ.
 

joe dokes

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 18, 2005
15,243
this is what I do not understand. Why did they wait all offseason for this? Was the plan really just “give him time and cross your fingers come spring training”? Def leads more credence to the idea thAt lack of confidence in his health contributed to the push to trade mookie
"Not having surgery" is not the same as "crossing your fingers."
 

CarolinaBeerGuy

Don't know him from Adam
SoSH Member
Mar 14, 2006
5,521
Kernersville, NC
TJS is not something that should be taken lightly. John Lackey returned strong; Anderson Espinoza still hasn't thrown a pitch since his TJ.
He ended up having a second TJ surgery last April. He's allegedly progressing well in his rehab and they hope he can start throwing again sometime next month with an eye on a late summer return to action.
 

johnnywayback

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 8, 2004
1,191
TJS is not something that should be taken lightly. John Lackey returned strong; Anderson Espinoza still hasn't thrown a pitch since his TJ.
There's been a lot of really interesting research about this. There was a great presentation at SaberSeminar a few years ago that I can't find online, but here's an article from Fangraphs from 2015: https://tht.fangraphs.com/tommy-john-surgery-success-rates-in-the-majors/.

TL;DR: You absolutely cannot assume that Chris Sale having Tommy John surgery means pressing pause on his career for a year and then picking up where he left off.
 

Van Everyman

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 30, 2009
18,795
Newton
Honest question: how does him throwing against live hitters for the first time since last season square with these quotes from a few weeks ago:
“I think I [threw] off the mound probably six or seven times this offseason,” said Sale. “My body is feeling good. Started flipping some breaking balls and getting after it a little bit. I'm doing normal stuff that I was before and it felt good. We'll just keep building from that.”
“I feel good. I feel confident that when this thing starts, I'm going to be ready for it, and I'll be back to doing what's expected of me. I have a certain expectation level when I step on the mound, and I'm going to get back to that,” said Sale.
“I feel better than I have in a long time, actually,” said Sale. “I've never taken that time off before. I don't know if since I started playing baseball if I've had that time off. Obviously it's something you don't want to have to go through, that was miserable, but there are silver linings in everything.

“You try to take the positives in every crappy scenario that comes up. I think that time off helped my entire body regenerate, my shoulder, my elbow, my forearm, every muscle in my body got a long break and a time to heal. I think in the end it will help me out in the long run.”
Which is to say, did he not pitch as hard the previous six or seven times? Is it just a coincidence that he faced live batters and now has pain? How does this work?