Chris Sale’s stuff looked better Tuesday night than it has much of this season, but the end result was the same.
The Boston Red Sox’s ace, as has often been the case, didn’t give his team a great chance to win. Of course, the offense didn’t come through either, but nevertheless, the Red Sox suffered a brutal 8-0 loss to the New York Yankees in the series opener of a two-game set at Yankee Stadium.
Sale, though his fastball velocity reached 98 mph, was tagged for four runs on seven hits with six strikeouts, one walk and a home run in five innings of work.
The left-hander never has been one to hide from being accountable, and that remained the case Tuesday night.
“It sucks,” Sale said, as seen on NESN’s postgame coverage. “Like I said, I’m not going to sugarcoat it, I just flat-out stink right now. I don’t know what it is. When you’re going good it’s good, and when you’re going bad it’s pretty bad. Hey, show up tomorrow, put on the shoes and get back after it.
“I just got to find a way to pitch better,” Sale continued. “This is flat-out embarrassing, for my family, for my team, for our fans. This is as bad as it gets. Like I said, I have to pitch better. I keep saying the same things, but at the end of the day, go out there give up four runs here, five runs here, seven runs here. I’m not getting to the sixth, seventh inning like I should. I mean that’s who I am, I’m supposed to pitch to the sixth, seventh, eighth inning, finish games and stuff like that, save out bullpen, cut it off when we’re losing and keep win streaks going, and that’s not who I’ve been and I’ve got to get back to that.”
Here are some other notes from Tuesday’s Red Sox-Yankees game:
— Mookie Betts is OK after appearing to hurt his hand during the game, Sox manager Alex Cora said.
While attempting to try and rob a home run, Betts landed awkwardly on his hand and was seen flexing it often throughout the game. He never was taken out.
— Sandy Leon made his 2019 debut after being called up from Triple-A Pawtucket earlier in the day.
The catcher went 0-for-3 with two strikeouts, but as always has been the case, he was there for his defense. Sale’s pace was good against the Yankees, a result of his chemistry with Leon appearing to pick right back up where it left off.
Though it didn’t equate to a win, it seemed clear Sale was more at ease pitching to Leon.
— Erasmo Ramirez, also called up Tuesday, made his big league debut in the loss.
He relieved Sale and pitched three innings, allowing four runs on as many hits with one walk, one strikeout and two home runs.