Chris Sale, the top pitcher for the Chicago White Sox and the Boston Red Sox for the last seven seasons, is getting out of Boston in a shocking blockbuster trade. Atlanta Braves infielder Vaughn Grissom will be traded for Sale, said Jeff Passan.
The Atlanta Braves have had an unusual offseason thus far, with the deal after a string of signing and release of senior players and no free agent activity whatsoever (with the exception of the signing of Reynaldo Lopez, a pitcher formerly of the White Sox).
Braves fans can be assured that seven-time All-Star and left-handed pitcher Chris Sale will get a shot to start in the middle of the rotation for a World Series contender in his 35th season. Sale has battled injuries in recent years, but the team still believes he has plenty of gas in the tank.
Sale made 20 starts in 2023, returning after missing the whole 2020 season and seeing action in 11 games in 2021 and 2022. He went 6-5 with a 4.30 ERA.
In his return season, Sale showed that he was not ready to hang up his spikes just yet, walking only 29 batters and striking out 125. He threw 102.2 innings.
From 2012 to 2018, Sale was one of the most dominant pitchers in the league. He was named to the All-Star team every year and finished in the top five for the Cy Young Award for six consecutive years, beginning in 2013.
Unfortunately for Grissom, the move puts a damper on his time in Atlanta, as the Braves lose a guy they likely saw as a key cog in their vast young talent pool.
Grissom, who will turn 23 next week, has had little success at the plate in 64 MLB games over the last two seasons.
Grissom hasn’t quite reached his power potential in the major leagues just yet, but in the little time he has played, he has compiled a slash line of.287/.339/.407.
The move shows that the Braves are confident in a middle infield with Orlando Arcia and Ozzie Albies. He is mostly a second baseman but has experience at shortstop as well.
It’s easier to see how Grissom might fit in with the Red Sox’s middle infield, which struggled with below-average hitting and personnel instability in 2023.
The Red Sox should have more depth at shortstop in 2024 with Trevor Story’s return from injury, but Grissom should see more action at second base.
Wayne Probert is a senior reporter at Zobuz, covering state and national politics, and he is a grantee with the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting. Before joining Zobuz, he worked as a freelance journalist in Kentucky, having been published by dozens of outlets including NPR, the Center for Media.