Chris Sale: A Study in Role Transition

If you knew the name ‘Chris Sale‘ before this year, you either were a huge White Sox fan, or you really knew your left-handed relievers. Sale was far from a big name, but he was a dominant reliever for his first two years in the majors. In limited action, he posted FIPs of 2.74 and 3.12, good for an FIP- of 63 and 75, both of which are very respectable numbers for a reliever. He is only 23 years old, and was the White Sox 1st pick in the 2010 draft (13th overall). Even as early as late 2011, it was announced that Sale would be moved into the starting rotation. We have seen this plot-line before, have we not? Daniel Bard, Neftali Feliz, and Joba Chamberlin (wherever he ends up) are only three examples of pitchers who have tried to make the transition. As we know, the results have been mixed, and for Bard and Feliz, it is too early to know if it is a good or bad idea. What about Sale? Continue reading

From Bullpen to Rotation

Heading into the 2012 season there were three pitchers that were headed to the starting rotation after spending the 2011 season in the bullpen. Those pitchers are Neftali Feliz, Chris Sale and Daniel Bard. The results have come with mixed success. One of the pitchers has been dominant, striking out 25% of the batters that he’s faced, one has had control problems, and the other has gotten extremely lucky. Continue reading