Wednesday, May 13, 2015
Chris Sale pitches more like himself; Carlos Rodon added to White Sox rotation
Chris Sale pitched like the ace he is Tuesday, putting a stop to the Sox's absurd seven-game road losing streak with a 4-2 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers.
Sale fired eight innings of two-run ball, allowing just three hits while striking out 11 and walking only one. This was Sale's 19th double-digit strikeout game in just his 91st career start.
We've come to expect this sort of dominance from Sale, but he's been off to a slow start this season after missing most of spring training with a broken foot. In his previous two outings, Sale had allowed 13 earned runs on 16 hits over 8.1 innings. He uncharacteristically walked seven batters over that same stretch.
On Tuesday, Sale did not issue a walk until there were two outs in the eighth, his last inning of work. The command was back, his breaking ball was better on the whole, and his velocity was in the high 90s into the late innings.
It goes without saying, but we'll say it anyway: The Sox need Sale to pitch like this regularly if they have any hope of getting back into contention in the AL Central race.
Rodon moves into rotation
The White Sox also announced Tuesday that prized prospect Carlos Rodon will make his second career start Friday in Oakland and will move into the rotation in place of Hector Noesi.
We probably haven't seen the last of Noesi starting games, as the Sox will keep a close eye on Rodon's innings count.
“There is going to be scheduled periods of breaks, there will be times when he is skipped, there will be times when he has more than the regular four or five days off,” GM Rick Hahn said in an ESPN Chicago article. “But the process of transitioning him into a starter will begin Friday in Oakland.”
That works for me. I didn't want Rodon to continue wasting away in a mop-up bullpen role. The kid is a starting pitcher, and I'm glad the Sox are going to let him start.