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Chris Sale may not be Pedro Martinez, but Wednesday he bested Hall of Famer with one accomplishment

Ryan Hannable
July 11, 2018 - 10:09 pm
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Chris Sale isn’t quite Pedro Martinez when it comes to pure dominance on the mound, but he’s pretty close.

And on Wednesday, Sale was able to remove Martinez from the record books with one statistic. 

The game marked Sale’s 200th career start and before him Martinez held the MLB record for most strikeouts in a player’s first 200 starts with 1,600. Sale already had him beat going into the start as he entered with 1,616.

Sale was able to add 12 more in the Red Sox’ 4-2 win over the Rangers to complete a three-game sweep. It was also their ninth straight win overall.

(Click here for a complete game recap.)

The left-hander continued his recent dominance by going seven shutout innings, scattering six hits, walking one and striking out 12. Sale has recorded 11 or more strikeouts and one walk or less in five consecutive starts, extending the longest such streak in MLB history. 

"Just more of the same," he said. "Just trying to throw strikes, fill up the zone. Yet again our guys come through and put some runs off the board and it takes a little bit of the tension. Allows me to just go out there and try to throw strikes and fill up the zone."

Over his last seven starts, he is 5-1 with a 0.94 ERA, while recording 78 strikeouts in 48 innings.

The only real time Sale was tested came in the sixth when he was faced with a first-and-third, nobody out situation. He struck out Adrian Beltre and then got a 1-6-3 double play, which left him particularly fired up. Sale walked off the mound yelling into his glove as he was so pumped about the play given the situation.

“My mom watches this, I can’t say that," he joked after.

Sale’s go-to pitch on Wednesday was his slider, as he made several Rangers hitters look silly with the pitch. According to Baseball Savant, he threw the pitch (43) one fewer time than his fastball (44). The slider also got him 10 swing-and-misses and he finished with 20 in all.

Although there’s still plenty of time before it happens, a few dominant October starts could get Sale into the conversation with Pedro, but for now the Red Sox will take this most recent stretch.

J.D. Martinez has now reached base in 35 straight home games, the longest such streak since Kevin Youkilis had a 38-game streak from 2006-07.

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