White Sox

White Sox: Chris Sale not concerned with tying MLB strikeout record

chris-sale-white-sox-0630.png

White Sox: Chris Sale not concerned with tying MLB strikeout record

ST. LOUIS — What’s Chris Sale more proud of: tying a major league strikeout record or getting his first career hit?

It’s actually not much of a debate. The hit wins.

Sale was far more concerned with getting the ball from his third-inning broken-bat single than he was after striking out Cardinals shortstop Jhonny Peralta to clinch his eighth consecutive start with 10 or more strikeouts, which tied Pedro Martinez’s 1999 record. The hit — and his ensuing slide into home to score the first run of what turned out to be a 2-1 White Sox win — was something Sale smiled about after the game.

“I’m not going to sit here and act like I did it on purpose,” Sale laughed. “I got lucky, I broke my bat, so that’s about as cheap of a hit as you possibly can get.”

[MORE WHITE SOX: Chris Sale does it again as White Sox outlast Cardinals]

When it came to his more historically significant accomplishment, though, Sale was quick to deflect attention away from it.

“Probably the least of anybody, really,” Sale said when asked how much attention he paid to equaling Martinez’s record. “Those kinds of things don’t really matter to me. People that know me know it is what it is really. It’s cool that’s stuff you talk about later on. You start worrying about stuff like right now, and we won’t be talking about that anymore for sure.”

Only two other pitchers besides Sale and Martinez have struck out double digit batters in seven straight starts — the others being Hall of Famer Nolan Ryan and soon-to-be Hall of Famer Randy Johnson. Sale’s streak began with 10 strikeouts May 23 against Minnesota, and he followed that with 12, 13, 14, 12, 14, 10 and 12 strikeouts, totaling 97 over those eight starts. Martinez struck out 107 in his eight-game stretch 16 years ago.

While Sale allowed five runs in his previous start in Minnesota and the White Sox are only 4-4 during his streak (Boston went 7-1 during Martinez’s), it hasn’t detracted from his dominance.

[SHOP WHITE SOX: Get a Chris Sale jersey right here]

“It’s just hard to keep finding adjectives for him,” manager Robin Ventura said. “He’s great, again the numbers he’s piling up and the people that he keeps getting grouped in with and come up when you mention his name are impressive. They’re some of the greatest pitchers that have ever played our game.”

Sale, though, isn’t willing to look up and admire his accomplishments just yet. There’s still half a season to be played, and the White Sox are still nine games under .500.

At some point Sale will reflect on matching — or, if his next start goes well, breaking — a major league record, but it’s not now.

“It’s stuff you think about when you are a kid and stuff,” Sale said. “There’s a time and a place for that stuff, and it’s not now, not here. So, like I said in the offseason maybe we’ll kick it around a little bit, but I still have a job to do.”

White Sox Talk Podcast: What it would take for the White Sox to sign Manny Machado

machad.jpg
USA TODAY

White Sox Talk Podcast: What it would take for the White Sox to sign Manny Machado

It might be a long shot for the White Sox to sign free agent Manny Machado, but here on the White Sox Talk Podcast, we like dark horses. Chuck Garfien, Ryan McGuffey and Vinnie Duber discuss what it would take to bring Machado to the South Side. Plus, is he "the" guy the White Sox are targeting this offseason? Will the Rockies listen to trade offers for Nolan Arenado a year before he reaches free agency? Plus, Chuck talks about a cost-controlled, All-Star on a rebuilding team that could be an answer at third base.

Listen to the full podcast here or via the embedded player below:

On this day in 2005: White Sox pitchers put the CG in Chicago

On this day in 2005: White Sox pitchers put the CG in Chicago

Mark Buehrle. Jon Garland. Freddy García. José Contreras.

The 2005 White Sox had four consecutive complete games to finish off the 2005 ALCS — Contreras took his turn in Game 5 against the Angels 13 years ago Tuesday. How special was that run of starting pitching to finish that series? Consider the following six statements:

— No team has had more than two complete games in a single postseason, let alone a postseason series, since.

— There has been a grand total of four complete games in 188 postseason games (through Monday) since the beginning of 2016.

— Those 2005 White Sox remain the only team with four complete games in a single LCS (which went to a best-of-seven format in 1985).

— They are the only team since the 1968 Tigers (in the World Series) with at least four complete games in any postseason series.

— They are the only team since the 1956 Yankees (in the World Series) with at least four consecutive complete games in a series. (The Yankees had five in a row: Games 3 through 7.)

— They are the only team since the 1928 Yankees (in the World Series) with at least four consecutive complete-game wins in a series (Games 1 through 4).

Take a moment to look back and appreciate what Don Cooper’s troops were able to accomplish in that series. The way the game is played nowadays, we will never see it again.