Boston Red Sox

Boston Red Sox

Boston Red Sox

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS - APRIL 01: Chris Sale #41 of the Boston Red Sox exits the game during the third inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Fenway Park on April 01, 2023 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Nick Grace/Getty Images)

It’s going to be quite a while until Chris Sale is back on the mound for the Red Sox.

On the shelf since an early exit from a June 1 start against the Reds, a Friday roster move saw the Red Sox transfer the 34-year-old Sale to the 60-day injured list.

Sale was originally put the 15-day injured list on June 2 with what the team called left shoulder inflammation.

  • Sale’s transfer to the 60-day injured list also came with a more detailed injury report from the Red Sox, with imaging revealing a ‘stress reaction’ in his left shoulder blade. According to the team, it’s not an injury that will require surgery, but will require at least four weeks of rest before the team figures out their next steps.

    Sale’s move to the 60-day injured list also means that Aug. 2 is now the earliest date that Sale can return to the club’s active roster.

  • Given the way Sale left that aforementioned June 1 start and the lack of much of anything from the Red Sox since Sale’s initial move to the 15-day injured list, the latest update on Boston’s top starter was somewhat expected, but still a gut punch for the Red Sox all the same.

    Sale was beginning to look like the Sale of old prior to his latest setback, and for a Red Sox club that’s desperately needed its ace to return to his No. 1 status of old.

    “Just disappointing, man,” Sale said last week about his latest injury. “Disappointing. I hate feeling like this. I started having fun playing baseball again, and now I’m back to not having fun. And that sucks.”

    The Red Sox, meanwhile, entered Friday with losses in five of their last seven games since Sale’s injury, and sit in the basement of the American League East by a staggering 14 games.

  • May 26, 2023; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Chris Sale (41) pitches against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the first inning at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

    May 26, 2023; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Chris Sale (41) pitches against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the first inning at Chase Field. (Joe Camporeale/USA TODAY Sports)

  • At this point, it’s beginning to feel like Sale will truly never be able to fully put these injury woes behind him.

    Beginning with shoulder discomfort late in Boston’s 2018 season that ended with Sale on the mound for the title-clinching out, it’s been almost impossible to see Sale at full health on anything resembling a full-time basis.

    Sale’s 2019 campaign came with some ugly numbers, and elbow issues that led to a career-worst 4.40 ERA and career-low 25 starts. And it only got worse from there, really, as Sale missed all of 2020 after undergoing Tommy John surgery to fix the issues that haunted and limited his 2019 season, and had a delayed start to his 2021 due to the surgery recovery. And 2022 was where it all got legitimately silly for the lanky lefty, really, as he was limited to just 5.2 innings over two starts due to rib injuries, a broken pinkie, and a bike accident.

    Through no fault of his own, it feels like Sale’s $145 million contract with the Red Sox has become a never-ending cycle of Sale having to roll the boulder back up the hill just when you think that the injury trouble is behind him.

    This, of course, is just the latest case.

    But one that’s stinging extra hard for a battered Boston rotation that needs its ace more than ever.

  • BOSTON, MA - JUNE 1: Chris Sale #41 of the Boston Red Sox bites on his glove as he leaves the game in the middle of the fourth inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Fenway Park on June 1, 2023 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo By Winslow Townson/Getty Images)

    BOSTON, MA – JUNE 1: Chris Sale #41 of the Boston Red Sox bites on his glove as he leaves the game in the middle of the fourth inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Fenway Park on June 1, 2023 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Winslow Townson/Getty Images)

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