Supposedly … SUPPOSEDLY, Chris Sale replaced the television he destroyed and treated WooSox players and staff to a $6,000 dinner. Big, if true.
Either way, that in no way justifies his despicable behavior after Wednesday’s rehab start, when he destroyed a TV and potentially a wall/ceiling/other surrounding objects simply because he couldn’t handle allowing one earned run on three hits and five walks in 3.2 innings against the New York Yankees‘ Triple-A team.
Someone recorded him doing it, the video made its rounds on social media, everyone formulated an opinion, podcasts talked about it, and then Sale and the Sox were left to deal with the aftermath.
General manager Chaim Bloom responded first, but we’ll get to that in a minute. How about Sale’s admission of guilt followed by a bunch of other nonsense trying to defend, once again, losing his mind during a REHAB START.
First, Sale pretty much blamed this being a “thing” because someone videotaped him. Shame on them for whipping out their phone when the best pitcher on the Boston Red Sox happens to be in town!
Also, Chris, we hate to tell ya, but yeah, if a Bank of America employee lost his/her mind on a client and started hurling rolls of quarters at the wall, a person recording them wouldn’t be at fault. Same with you, a professional athlete. It’s the person under the microscope’s fault every time.
Yankees fans can’t believe Chris Sale’s response to meltdown
OK, fine, Sale thought he was taking his actions out of the public eye … but does that make it any more acceptable? If you’re doing something inappropriate, you’re doing something inappropriate. Someone seeing it makes it worse, sure, but it’s still wrong.
And here’s Sale bending for a moment before claiming he’d like to meet Mr. Perfect because, of course, that’s the natural progression of this.
Nobody was asking for perfection. Nobody was even suggesting personal flaws don’t exist! People were just hoping for a bit of a higher standard from a professional baseball player and World Series champion in a less-prominent setting where players are perhaps looking to learn from someone of his stature and fans are getting a treat from such an appearance.
Say what you want about “passion” and “accountability,” but this isn’t it. This is unhinged anger and emotion that has been left unchecked for years — as evidenced during his time with the Chicago White Sox when he cut up the team’s alternate jerseys because he didn’t like them and then threatened to stage a walkout because some of his teammates wanted Adam LaRoche’s 12-year-old son to no longer hang out in the locker room and travel with the team. You’ve seen the countless meltdowns with the Red Sox, too.
And now, for Bloom.
Bloom’s comments weren’t necessarily bad. He said the organization didn’t condone that behavior … but like Sale, he then began a backtrack for the ages. “I’m sorry, but … .” You know how it goes. Here’s what he said on Thursday:
"“That’s who he is. There are plenty of guys, including somebody we all love who is going into Cooperstown later this month, who has been caught on tape doing stuff like that when they’re frustrated during a ballgame. It happens, it probably happens more than people think and with guys that you might never suspect.“So it’s never something that we condone, but there’s a lot of passion in this game and when you have someone who holds himself to as high a standard as Chris does and who cares as much as he does, sometimes that passion is going to express itself in different ways.”"
Did … this man … just even loosely compare Sale’s outburst at a minor-league stadium to HALL OF FAMER David Ortiz destroying a telephone in the dugout back in 2013? That was still wildly out of line, but the stakes were entirely different and Ortiz didn’t have a long history of losing his mind at run-of-the-mill occurrences.
As a professional, Sale should know the cameras are always on him even when it feels like they aren’t. “Passion” is part of the game and sometimes the tension gets a bit uncomfortable for everyone due to the natural high stakes, but this wasn’t one of them.
This was Sale throwing a temper tantrum and shouldn’t be mistaken for his love of the game. Destroying a TV and making a fool of yourself in front of young aspiring ball players doesn’t “make you who you are.”