Chris Sale, 34, the “fireballer” who went from being a World Series-winning starter for the Boston Red Sox to a glass house, has been traded to the Atlanta Braves. The Red Sox had a trade veto, but did not exercise it and headed to Atlanta.

The Red Sox completed the trade on Aug. 31, sending the left-hander to Atlanta in exchange for infield prospect Von Grissom, 22. The deal was finalized with Boston assuming $17 million of Sale’s $27.5 million salary next year.

Boston’s Chief Baseball Operations Officer Craig Breslow told and other local media outlets, “It’s a very difficult decision to trade a player of Sale’s caliber who has contributed so much to our team and played a key role in our World Series victory. It was the best decision for the team, and it was what I had to do.”

Sale, who had a veto on the trade, waived it and accepted the move to Atlanta. “Sale said the trade was bittersweet because Boston is a franchise that means a lot to him,” Breslow said. “He had a very close relationship with the people here,” Breslow said. “It’s never easy to make a decision like this, but I really appreciate the way he approached it.

Sale’s decision to leave Boston, where he spent seven years, was also motivated by a desire to win.

“He was very appreciative of the opportunity to go to a team that could compete for a championship in the National League (NL),” Breslow said, adding that the fact that Atlanta is a championship-caliber team was one of the reasons he waived his veto.

Atlanta, which went 104-58 last year, has the best winning percentage in baseball (.642) and has won the NL East for the last six years, beginning in 2018. Led by a potent lineup of Max Freed, Spencer Strider, Charlie Morton, and Bryce Elder, Sale joins a strong starting rotation. Barring injury, Sale is the kind of pitcher who can really elevate a team. He still averages 93.9 mph on his four-seam fastball.

Alex Anthopoulos, Atlanta’s president of baseball operations, said: “We realize that Sale’s health can be an issue, but we acquired him because we believe he is a playoff starter. We’re going to do everything we can to keep him on the mound.” “Sale is having the most normal offseason he’s had in a long time. 토토사이트 We’re mindful that he only threw 100 innings last year. We’re not going to put a pitch count limit on him, but we may skip a bullpen session or give him extra rest as we see how he feels.”

The 6-foot-4 right-hander, who throws a fastball that reaches nearly 100 mph with a low arm angle and a sharp slider, is 120-80 with a 3.10 ERA and 18 saves in 343 career games (263 starts, 1780⅔ innings) since making his debut with the Chicago White Sox in 2010. He twice led the American League (AL) in strikeouts and was named an All-Star seven times. He was one of the league’s top pitchers, finishing in the top five of the AL Cy Young Award for six straight years from 2013-2018.

After being traded to Boston in December 2016, he spent two years as a specialty ace in 2017 and 2018.

In 2017, his rookie year, he pitched a league-high 214 1/3 innings with 308 strikeouts. In 2018, he led Boston to the World Series title and was a key part of the championship run. In recognition of his championship contributions, the Red Sox signed Sale to a five-year, $145 million extension in March 2019.

The deal was set to begin in 2020, but that’s when he was plagued by an injury bug. In August 2019, he was lost for the season with an elbow injury, and in March 2020, he underwent Tommy John surgery and missed the entire season. He returned in August 2021, but started the 2022 season on the back foot in July with a stress fracture in his ribs. After just two games, he fractured his pinky finger on a hard hit ball, then broke his wrist in a cycling accident while rehabbing and was out for the season.

This year, he hasn’t been injury-free. After spending more than two months on the disabled list in early June with shoulder inflammation, Sale was 6-5 with a 4.30 ERA in 20 games (102⅔ innings). After signing an extension with Boston, he was traded after totaling just 31 games and 151 innings over four years, going 11-7 with a 3.93 ERA. It will be interesting to see if he can bounce back in Atlanta this year, the final year of his five-year deal.

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