BOSTON (CBS) — The Red Sox picked a great night to smack six home runs and score 13 times. On the night where Chris Sale finally got to face his former team in Chicago, the typically brilliant Red Sox ace didn’t quite have his best stuff.
The night started as well as any for Sale this season, as White Sox fans gave the southpaw a standing ovation before the start of the game. Sale followed that up by striking out the side in the first.
It was with two outs in the second inning, after the Red Sox had just staked Sale to a 4-0 lead, when things suddenly began unraveling. Sale allowed a single to Kevan Sanchez and issued a rare walk to Yolmer Sanchez before allowing three straight singles to cut the Red Sox’ lead to 4-3.
In total, Sale allowed five earned runs on 10 hits in five innings while walking two. He did strike out nine batters, running his major league-leading total to 110 on the season – but clearly, it wasn’t the best night for the Red Sox ace.
Sale didn’t chalk the bad outing up to anything related to facing his former team when he spoke to reporters after the game on Tuesday night. He gave all the credit to the offense for lifting him to a win on a night where he simply wasn’t at his best.
“At the end of the day it’s a game. You still have to go out there and perform and pitch well,” said Sale. “My guys allowed me to suck tonight.”
He also shot down the idea of the Red Sox offense “owing” him any kind of run support, which mostly hasn’t been strong so far in 2017.
“They don’t owe me anything,” he said. “Every day’s a new day. I’m appreciative of that. If anything, I owe them one.”
Sale’s next chance to get back on track comes on Sunday against the Orioles at Camden Yards. It will be the first time Sale has faced Baltimore since May 2, when the ace ignited a bit of controversy when he threw a pitch behind the Orioles’ Manny Machado.