Well--I must say: I was very surprised to learn that Chris Sale was placed on the 60-day IL and probably is done for the year. Surprised it took this long. We're doing jokes!
Chaim Bloom is a man who is not good at his job. The idea that your season would largely be predicated on the health of a gutless, fake tough guy, with the tensile strength of summer fog, who hasn't given you anything since 2018, was as faulty a form of team-building as one might think of. This team was actually built in a way that it was dependent on Chris Sale not just pitching a full season, but being great.
Chris Sale is thirty-four-years-old. It amuses me how little Chris Sale has to show for his career. He has 119 wins. Do you know who I can make cases for as being better than Chris Sale?
Derek Lowe. Mike Boddicker. John Tudor.
Mike Boddicker won 134 games. Do you think Chris Sale will reach that number?
You might whine, "Wins don't mean anything!" which prompts me to say, "Ah, you're one of those people," but Chris Sale was never as good as Mike Boddicker was in 1984, and he's barely ever been as good as Boddicker was for the Red Sox in 1990. (Boddiker also has a postseason MVP, and Chris Sale has about as much chance of winning one of those as a dead cricket does.)
Nor has Chris Sale been as valuable as Derek Lowe was in key situations--for rarely in the sport's history has a pitcher ever been as consistently bad as postseason Chris Sale--or in his role as a long man out of the bullpen, and Derek Lowe the starter was better in 2002 than Chris Sale the starter has been in any year of his career. Derek Lowe was a rare pitcher who excelled in three very different roles. Lot of value in that.
Want to do John Tudor? He won 117 games. Check out his numbers in 1985. Chris Sale never got close to what Tudor did that year.
These aren't superstar names, are they? They were good pitchers. They weren't great from year to year. They weren't even good from year to year. But they gave you more, both in terms of peak and reliability. You could win with those guys more readily than you could with the most overrated player in the history of Boston sports, but one who has inspired me to invent a new stat.
You know WAR? As in, Wins Above Replacement?
What about, WAC, as in, Wins Above C-Dawg?
That's right, imagine the Fenway announcer: "And starting for the Red Sox, for it has come to this, Colin 'the C-Dawg' Fleming in his first Big League appearance."
So I'm out there, okay? First pitch probably won't go well. I'm going to bounce it, or throw it over everyone's head. Embarrassing. The radar gun won't be doing me any favors, either, because no one is going to be scared of my 60-mph smoke. Then I settle in. Next pitch, I'm dealing a strike, which the batter swings at and launches way over the Monster and across Lansdowne. It would have maybe made it to the Pike, if the pitch had any power behind it.
But then you know what I do? I reach for my shoulder. Doesn't have to be an overt reach. Can be very subtle. Everyone picks that up. The TV guys are all over it. Then Alex Cora is coming out from the dugout, and the trainers. I leave the game! That's it! I just leave! I only gave up the one hit, technically. Then I just stay out for the season. (Oh yeah: I also make sure to act really disappointed after the game, in a manly way. But it'll be fine. I can also just do something else tomorrow.)
Now you tell me: how much less have I contributed to the Red Sox with my one outing than Chris Sale has since 2019? It's really not that much less. How many Wins Above C-Dog does Chris Sale really have?
Plus, I'm better for morale. I might get the guys running stairs. That could build camaraderie. I don't destroy clubhouse TVs, I'm not one of those annoying fake tough guys, I'm affordable.
It's almost like anyone would provide more value.