The best chance for the Red Sox to have a starter in the All-Star Game may be for Chris Sale to be named as the starting pitcher.
The new ace of Boston’s rotation has been every bit as great as advertised. Sale leads the league with a 0.91 WHIP, he’s tied for second with 10 wins and he’s third with a 2.77 ERA. The hard-throwing lefty leads the league by a mile in strikeouts, producing an outstanding 12.27 K/9, along with an AL-best 7.38 K/BB ratio.
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Sale’s 3.4 WAR is fourth in the AL among pitchers and puts him on pace for a career-high. FanGraphs calculates the all-encompassing stat a bit differently. By their standards, Sale’s 4.7 WAR leads all major league pitchers by a wide margin. As does his 2.05 FIP, which wipes away the defense and other factors outside of the pitcher’s control and credits them only for what they should be responsible for.
Sale was the AL starter in last year’s All-Star Game, representing the Chicago White Sox. Now he has an opportunity to claim that honor again, this time wearing a Red Sox uniform. Boston hasn’t had a pitcher start the All-Star Game since Derek Lowe in 2002. There’s a solid chance that Sale will be next, making him the first pitcher since Dave Stieb (1983-84) to start for the AL in consecutive years.