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Thursday, April 2, 2020

Chris Sale dismisses velocity concerns with first pitch of ALDS

Chris Sale

Chris Sale dismissed concerns about his velocity with the first pitch he threw in the ALDS on Friday.

Sale’s first pitch of Game 1 of the ALDS against the New York Yankees was clocked at 95.4 mph by MLB.com (many reporters said it was at 96). He threw several other pitches during the first inning at 95, while one against Giancarlo Stanton was 96.6 mph. Sale struck out three batters and walked one in the first.

How the Boston Red Sox ace would look in Game 1 was one of the biggest questions for the team entering the series.

Sale missed time over the final months of the season due to two DL stints because of his shoulder. He hasn’t thrown more than five innings or 92 pitches in an outing since July 27.

Over his final handful of starts, the southpaw experienced a consistent decline in velocity. In his most recent start, Sale averaged around 90 mph on his fastball and topped out at 94. Seeing him bring the heat early against the Yankees is a comforting sign for the Red Sox and their fans.

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