Red Sox

How Chris Sale can make MLB history in Friday's start vs. Astros

How Chris Sale can make MLB history in Friday's start vs. Astros

Don't let the 1-5 record and 4.31 ERA fool you: Chris Sale has been absolutely dominant over the last three weeks.

In fact, the Boston Red Sox ace has the chance to make history Friday night in Houston.

Sale enters Friday's start against the Astros on a crazy streak: He's recorded ten or more strikeouts and allowed four or fewer hits in four consecutive starts dating to May 3.

If he extends that streak to five, he'll pass Pedro Martinez in the Red Sox record books and tie Johan Santana in the MLB record books.

Milestones were the last thing on Sale's mind in April, when he stumbled to an 0-5 record with a 6.30 ERA through his first six outings.

He's been absolutely lights-out in May, though, averaging a mind-boggling 17.4 strikeouts per nine innings (51 Ks in 26.1 innings) while allowing three runs or fewer in all four of his starts.

Believe it or not, the 30-year-old has room for improvement, as he walked a season-high five batters in his last appearance against Houston on May 19.

First pitch at Minute Maid Park is set for 8:10 p.m. ET, with history on the line for Sale as he continues his May redemption tour.

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Christian Vazquez claims the Red Sox are 'back' after sweep of Orioles

Christian Vazquez claims the Red Sox are 'back' after sweep of Orioles

After losing five of six to the Rays and Rangers, two teams the Red Sox will continue to compete with in the American League playoff race, it was gut-check time for the defending World Series champs. 

They were 35-34 and at risk of falling too far behind in the AL Wild Card standings, but the Red Sox were able to save a split against Texas by winning the last two games of that series, and then followed it up with a sweep of the lowly Orioles. 

After their 8-6 victory in the final game at Camden Yards, Christian Vazquez said, "We're back." 

It's hard to tell if he's right after three games they should have won, but the Sox have shown signs of life during their five-game winning streak. They've averaged 7.8 runs and 12.2 hits over the last five games and have belted 14 home runs over that span. 

The Red Sox now sit 5.5 games behind the AL East-leading Yankees and are tied with the Rangers for the second Wild Card spot, holding a half-a-game lead over Cleveland. 

Last season, everything went right for this team, and this year they've had to fight through major adversity to stay alive in the playoff hunt. Perhaps this is the time we can look back on as the turning point for another deep run in October or just another example of what could have been. 

Either way, we'll probably get a better idea of where the Red Sox stand when they travel to Minnesota on Monday for a three-game set against one of the best teams in the American League. 

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Rob Manfred hoping for an opportunity to bring All-Star Game to Boston

Rob Manfred hoping for an opportunity to bring All-Star Game to Boston

The city of Boston hasn't hosted an All-Star Game since 1999. But, it looks like MLB commissioner Rob Manfred wants to change that in the near future.

In a recent interview with Pete Abraham of The Boston Globe, Manfred was asked about bringing the game to Fenway Park again in the near future. And his response will give hope to a lot of Boston fans.

I’ll tell you two things: We have a lot of demand for All-Star Games, but we haven’t been in Boston since 1999 and my recollection is that ’99 was a hell of an event. I hope that we do have an opportunity to be in Boston before too many years go by.

Having an All-Star Game in Boston would surely excite fans, and as Manfred mentioned, the last one was a great showcase. In that contest, Boston Red Sox legend Ted Williams was famously honored by the crowd and the all-century team members in attendance. That led to an incredible atmosphere at the event that only got better when the-Red Sox pitcher Pedro Martinez struck out five of the six batters he faced.

The Red Sox are reportedly interested in hosting the event in 2029, marking the 30th anniversary of the last contest.

Manfred also commented on the decision to have the Red Sox and Yankees play the MLB's first regular season games in London, and said that it was important to have the two prestigious teams face off.

If you’re going to get people excited about the game, particularly in a city like London, bringing two great rivals is about the best plan you can come up with.

This certainly makes sense, as Red Sox vs. Yankees is still one of the best rivalries in the sport. And given that the two squads are fighting hard in a three-team race in one of the league's best divisions, it should make for some exciting and important baseball overseas.

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