White Sox ace Chris Sale has been 6-foot-6 and about 175 pounds for most of his career, but the rail thin 27-year-old four-time All-Star has recently been trying to bulk up and his goal is to reach 200 pounds this year.
And in a situation almost no one–including me–can relate to, Sale is having some trouble. He weighed in at 190 pounds upon arriving at White Sox camp, but his teammates and the team training staff are skeptical he’ll get to 200.
White Sox director of conditioning Allen Thomas told Scott Merkin of MLB.com:
Yeah, every time he comes in, he puts a couple pounds of weight in his back pocket so I can’t see. 205 some days, 179 some days. It depends on how many Philly cheese steaks.
Sale described the weight gain as “my quest” and told Merkin that he’s been eating tons of tacos, cheeseburgers, and steaks at home. But as White Sox center fielder Adam Eaton put it:
I don’t think he’ll ever see 200 … and he’s eating whatever he wants to come across his plate. I don’t know, he’s been blessed.
Or cursed, at least as far as the 200-pound goal is concerned.
Sale credited Thomas and the training staff for increasing his strength and endurance regardless of his weight and it’s worth noting that he’s thrown an average of 197 innings in four seasons as a starting pitcher. He’s been a whole lot more durable than most people expected based on his incredibly thin frame and first two seasons spent as a reliever, so perhaps looks–and the effect of tacos and cheeseburgers–can be deceiving.
Metabolism is a helluva thing.