Ace on Sale
The Red Sox rotation already boasts the reigning Cy Young winner, as well as a former recipient of the award who was signed to a record contract last winter. Dave Dombrowski wasn’t content with a pair of aces, so he dealt for a third.
Boston acquired left-handed starter Chris Sale from the Chicago White Sox earlier this month in a blockbuster trade that cost them two of their top prospects – infielder Yoan Moncada, widely viewed as the best prospect in baseball, as well as flame-throwing starter Michael Kopech.
The price was steep, but Sale is worth it. He’s been an All-Star and finished in the top six in Cy Young voting in each of the last five seasons. The 27-year old has been a workhorse, topping 200 innings in three of the last four seasons. He also owns a career 3.00 ERA and 10.1 K/9 rate.
Sale is one of the top pitchers in the American League, yet he’s signed to a bargain contract. Assuming both option years are picked up, the Red Sox will have Sale locked in for three years at a very reasonable total of $38 million. Better yet, he’ll only count for $6.5 million against the luxury tax, which counts the average annual value of the contract.
Concerns over Boston’s depleted farm system are understandable, but the opportunity to acquire Sale was too good to pass up. He immediately launches the Red Sox to the front runner position in the AL by solidifying what is now arguably the best rotation in baseball.