Chris Sale wants to throw 200 innings this season

3 Comments

Chris Sale logged 71 innings out of the White Sox bullpen in 2011 and hasn’t started a game since May of 2010 at Florida Gulf Coast University, but that hasn’t stopped him from setting the bar pretty high for his first season in the starting rotation.

According to Chuck Garfien of CSNChicago.com, Sale said yesterday that he wants to pitch 200 innings this season.

“It’s not a matter of whether I think I can. I want to,” said Sale. “That’s something that I want to push for because that’s what this team needs. I don’t really like to set goals or live up to expectations and stuff because I tried doing that last year and I failed miserably.”

It’s nice to have goals and all, but the chances of this actually happening are just about zero.

Though the White Sox don’t have a firm innings limit in mind for the 22-year-old left-hander, or at least one they are willing to disclose publicly, pitching coach Don Cooper told the Associated Press yesterday that they plan to monitor how many innings he’ll throw and “evaluate things as we’re going.” There’s no doubt that Sale has electric stuff, but one of the big unknowns is how his rail-thin frame will hold up to the rigors of pitching every fifth day in the majors.

Sale, who was selected 14th overall by Chicago in the 2010 First-Year Player Draft, has a 2.58 ERA and 111/37 K/BB ratio over his first 94 1/3 major league innings.

Nationals place Koda Glover on 10-day disabled list

Elsa/Getty Images
Leave a comment

The Nationals have placed reliever Koda Glover on the 10-day disabled list due to a left hip impingement, Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post reports. Glover said he is “extremely confident” that he’ll need only the minimum 10 days to recover.

Glover, 24, felt hip discomfort when throwing his first pitch in Tuesday’s relief appearance. He attributed it to the cold, per Janes.

Glover was one of a handful of candidates to handle the ninth inning for the Nationals. It’s been a mixed bag for him, as he has a loss and a blown save along with a 4.15 ERA and a 6/1 K/BB ratio in 8 2/3 innings.

Clay Buchholz apologized to the Phillies for getting injured

Drew Hallowell/Getty Images
6 Comments

MLB.com’s Todd Zolecki reports that starter Clay Buchholz is at Citizens Bank Park for Wednesday night’s game against the Marlins. The right-hander recently underwent surgery to repair a partial tear of his flexor pronator mass. The timetable for his recovery is three to five months, but most are expecting him to miss the rest of the season since the Phillies aren’t legitimate contenders.

According to Zolecki, Buchholz apologized to GM Matt Klentak “and others” — presumably other front office staff and/or his teammates — for getting injured. Buchholz hopes to return to pitch in September.

It’s saddening to me, and indicative of the general anti-labor culture in sports, that a player feels obligated to apologize for getting injured on the job. Injuries are nothing new for Buchholz, which might have factored into his decision to apologize. Red Sox fans got on his case quite a bit over the years for his propensity to land on the disabled list. But it wasn’t like Buchholz was taking unnecessary risks; he simply did his job, which entails doing a lot of unhealthy movement with his arm. Buchholz owes no one an apology.

Buchholz isn’t the only player to have apologized for getting injured. Outfielder Hideki Matsui apologized to the Yankees in 2006. Starter Masahiro Tanaka apologized in 2014. Twins reliever Glen Perkins apologized last year. Even Madison Bumgarner sort of apologized for suffering injuries riding a dirt bike on an off-day, saying “It’s definitely not the most responsible decision I’ve made.” Because god forbid an athlete has interests and hobbies outside of his vocation.

Players are brought up in a sports culture that allows exorbitantly wealthy owners to bilk the players — laborers — at every possible turn. They’re mostly underpaid and poorly taken care of in the minors. If and when they reach the major leagues, their salaries are intentionally depressed for six years and their service time is toyed with (just ask Kris Bryant). Buchholz endured that and then endured the criticism that comes with having been a hyped prospect who mostly failed to live up to expectations. He’s gone above and beyond what he needed to do to have a successful career as a professional baseball player, even if it wasn’t as much as fans or front office personnel would have liked.