Boston Red Sox: Chris Sale’s striking out players at historic rate

CLEVELAND, OH - AUGUST 24: Starting pitcher Chris Sale
CLEVELAND, OH - AUGUST 24: Starting pitcher Chris Sale /

Boston Red Sox pitcher Chris Sale closing in on strikeout feat only accomplished five times this century.

If you asked Chris Sale, he’d tell you he’s more concerned with the Boston Red Sox playoff hunt than reaching 300 K’s on the season.

As they should be, Boston has a chance to make a deep run in October this year, but what Sale is doing shouldn’t go unnoticed.

Since 2000, only three pitchers have reached 300 K’s in a single season; Randy Johnson, Curt Schilling, and Clayton Kershaw. Chris Sale is hoping to join that illustrious club, with three starts left he is 13 strikeouts from 300. Below are the pitchers who’ve surpassed 300 K’s this century.

Chris Sale is averaging 9.6 strikeouts per start and with three starts left, that means he is on pace to finish with 315 strikeouts. With that being said, Sale hasn’t reached 300 yet, and anything can happen.

Pedro Martinez holds the Boston Red Sox single-season strikeout record with 313, which he set in 1999. Pedro surpassed 300 K’s in a single season twice actually, the other time being 1997 when he struck out 305 batters.

Related Story: Chris Sale’s historic night puts him on pace to break more records

John Farrell and other Red Sox players are enamored with Sale’s performance this year, but he just wants to stay focused.

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Whether Chris Sale surpasses Pedro’s single-season strikeout record (313) or even reach 300 K’s on the season, he probably doesn’t care. Here’s what Sale had to say about the historical strikeout pace he’s on.

"“I’m not here to talk about that kind of crap, man,’’ he said. “We have a long way to go. A long way to go; we have a lot of work to do.’’"

That is a great mentality, keep working hard and focus; because records are fun, but winning the World Series is and should be the ultimate goal for every player that plays professional baseball. On the flip side, Red Sox manager John Farrell had nothing but praise for Boston’s new pitching stud.

"“I’ve not been around a pitcher that’s had those kind of totals. The strikeout capability is certainly unique,’’ Red Sox manager John Farrell said. “He’s an elite pitcher and it’s not just with one pitch. It’s three different ones he can get strikeouts with.’’"

The Boston Red Sox aren’t as hot as they were last year, but Boston’s backbone this year is pitching. Opposite of last year, when Boston was one of the top offenses in the MLB; but the season came to an abrupt ending in October, due to poor pitching.

Next: David Price shows $217 million worth of value in relief

With Chris Sale being Boston’s ace, Drew Pomeranz and Doug Fister making solid outings, the Red Sox don’t need David Price this October; Price who’s been battling injuries all season would be a nice addition to the team in October, even if it’s just as a reliever.