BOSTON (CBS) — Chris Sale got back on track Tuesday night in Toronto, notching his 15th win of the season while also making some MLB history.
Career achievements are usually lost on Sale, whose focus is as pinpoint as his fastball. But even he was a little impressed with his personal accomplishment on Tuesday, becoming the fastest pitcher to reach the 1,500 strikeout mark for his career. It took the Boston lefty just 1,290 innings to K his 1,500th batter, a milestone he reached by freezing Kevin Pillar on a filthy slider in the second inning.
“That’s pretty crazy,” Sale told reporters after Boston’s 3-0 win. “This game has been around a long time. To do that is cool. I appreciate it. I try not to get too caught up in it, but I definitely take a step back and look at it and appreciate it.”
Sale struck out 11 Blue Jays over seven shutout innings on Tuesday, bringing his season total to 264. With at least five starts left in the regular season, Sale is within striking distance of Pedro Martinez’s club record of 313 strikeouts in a season, which Pedro set during his magical 1999 season. Tuesday night was Sale’s 17th double-digit strikeout game of the season, just two behind Pedro’s club record (also set in 1999).
As he continues to set down opposing batters with ease, Sale will continue to flirt with history.