Red Sox

Eerie Chris Sale-Pedro Martinez comparison bodes well for Red Sox ace

Eerie Chris Sale-Pedro Martinez comparison bodes well for Red Sox ace

It's hard not to be concerned about Chris Sale after watching the Boston Red Sox ace get roughed up in Seattle on Thursday night.

What's the best way to quell those concerns? Context, of course.

Below is a comparison of Sale's brutal Opening Day start against the Mariners and Pedro Martinez's 2002 Opening Day outing for the Red Sox versus the Toronto Blue Jays.

So ... yeah. Their stat lines were virtually identical. Boston's opponent even scored a total of 12 runs in both games, both losses.

But Martinez bounced back in a huge way, pitching a shutout in his next appearance (one of his 11 shutouts on the season) and steamrolling to 20-4 record with an MLB-best 2.26 ERA with an American League-leading 239 strikeouts.

Does Martinez's Opening Day start from 17 years ago mean Sale is about to post a Cy Young-caliber season? Of course not. They're two different pitchers in completely different eras dealing with varying degrees of arm trouble.

But lest you think we're comparing apples to oranges: Martinez was 30 years old in 2002, his 11th MLB campaign. Sale? He turns 30 on Saturday as he begins his 10th MLB season.

The Red Sox ace may need to make adjustments going forward to rediscover the effectiveness that earned him seven consecutive All-Star nods. But there's precedent for a bounce-back, and Sale doesn't need to leave the organization (Martinez is employed by the Red Sox as a special assistant) to find it.

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Xander Bogaerts offers thoughts on Mookie Betts returning to Red Sox in 2021

Xander Bogaerts offers thoughts on Mookie Betts returning to Red Sox in 2021

The Boston Red Sox made a decision that made a lot of fans unhappy in early February. The team decided to trade Mookie Betts to the Los Angeles Dodgers along with David Price in exchange for a package of three prospects.

Betts, the MLB's MVP back in 2018, is one of the top five players in the league. He hit .295 with 29 homers last year as the Red Sox lead-off hitter, so parting with him obviously stings.

But could the Red Sox try to bring him back in free agency next offseason? It's possible, and it's something that Xander Bogaerts thinks the team could attempt to do.

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“Hey, you know... probably, maybe in a year,” Bogaerts said of potentially getting Betts back in 2021, per Chris Cotillo of MassLive.com. “We’ll see how that goes. He knows what he means to us and we’ll cross that bridge when we get there.”

Of course, there's no guarantee that Betts will end up returning to Boston. He could opt to sign an extension with the Dodgers or he could simply sign with the team that offers him the most money. And given how far apart he and the Red Sox were in negotiations, Betts may simply be out of their preferred price range.

It's tough to prognosticate what will happen in a year. And Betts wasn't willing to give any context clues during his introductory press conference with the Dodgers.

But Bogaerts and the Sox will remain hopeful. And until then, Boston's shortstop had one message for his former teammate.

“Obviously, I wish him nothing but the best," Bogaerts said, per Cotillo. "One of the best teammates I’ve had. One of the best young players we had to wear the Red Sox uniform.

"He’s someone we’re going to miss a lot. It’s not easy to replace somebody like that on and off the field.”

Rob Manfred provides updated timeline for Red Sox sign-stealing investigation

Rob Manfred provides updated timeline for Red Sox sign-stealing investigation

With spring training now here for MLB clubs, the Boston Red Sox have one massive question hanging over their heads. What will be the result of the MLB's investigation into the team's alleged sign-stealing?

Well, on Sunday afternoon, the Sox got an update on when that may be coming thanks to MLB commissioner Rob Manfred.

Manfred has stated that the investigation will likely be wrapped up within the next two weeks, according to Evan Drellich of The Athletic.

It will be interesting to see who the MLB is re-interviewing and what impact that will have on the investigation. But the fact that some developments have "slowed down" the MLB doesn't seem to be good news for the Red Sox.

The sooner the Sox know the results of the investigation, the sooner they can move on from it. And that will be important with the regular season drawing nearer and nearer.