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Chris Sale Newsbeat

Wednesday, September 04, 2019

Red Sox hope Chris Sale is Justin Verlander, but what if he’s Tim Lincecum?

In 2014, Tigers ace Justin Verlander underwent abdominal surgery to address a lingering core muscle issue. He returned in time for Opening Day, but posted the second-worst ERA of his career. Shoulder and triceps injuries took a bite out of his production, limiting him to 20 starts in 2015. Many wondered if he could transition from power pitcher to whatever came next without entering a permanent decline.

By that same season, a two-time Cy Young Award winner just four months younger than Verlander already had his answer, and it was a resounding no. Tim Lincecum burned bright, burned fast, and then burned out. After winning consecutive Cy Young Awards with the Giants despite a violent delivery considered a ticking time bomb, Lincecum’s fall came swiftly. At age 28 in 2012, he led the NL in losses. By 2016, his career was effectively over after he posted a 9.00 ERA with the Angels.

Just days after Verlander’s third career no-hitter put him in elite, Hall of Fame company, why are we comparing him to a contemporary who hasn’t thrown a pitch in three years?

Because Verlander and Lincecum, respectively, feel like Chris Sale’s best- and worst-case scenarios.

Mind you, I think the Red Sox fans will take winning two more World Series even if it means Sale is one of the worst pitchers in the league, and who are we to worry about John Henry’s bankroll?

 

QLE Posted: September 04, 2019 at 01:37 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: chris sale, justin verlander, tim lincecum

 

 

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