Sale, Abreu among White Sox record setters
Southpaw sets club strikeout record; first baseman matches Pujols
CHICAGO -- Chris Sale did not participate in Chicago's 6-0 loss to Detroit on Sunday afternoon, marking the finale to a 76-86 performance for the South Siders.
But his impact was felt plenty around baseball over the previous 161 games.
Sale's 274 strikeouts stand as a new single-season franchise record, topping the old mark of 269 set by Ed Walsh in 1908. The White Sox ace fanned seven on Friday to reach that final total.
This number also gives Sale the AL strikeout title, topping Chris Archer by 22. He finished third overall to Clayton Kershaw's total of 301 and Max Scherzer's total of 276. Sale becomes the first White Sox hurler since Esteban Loaiza in 2003 to lead the AL in strikeouts.
Getting through the season healthy, making 31 starts and reaching 208 2/3 innings stand out as the most impressive statistics for Sale in '15.
"That's the most important part about being a starting pitcher, being able to take the ball every fifth day, go out there and do your job," Sale said. "You never want anyone to do your job for you and any time you can go out there and take the ball when it's your turn, it's important.
"I pride myself on that. I just try to build on that and try to do the same thing for years to come."
Archer (Rays, this season), Ubaldo Jimenez (Rockies, in 2010) and Sale stand as the only active pitchers who own a team's single-season strikeout record. Sale also shares the record for consecutive double-digit strikeout efforts with Pedro Martinez at eight, which he produced from May 23 to June 30.
White Sox pitchers set a franchise record with 1,359 strikeouts, breaking the previous mark of 1,249 set in 2013. Carlos Rodon put up 139 strikeouts, marking the second-most in White Sox history by a rookie behind Gary Peters (189 in 1963). And on a more dubious note, Jose Quintana earned his 52nd career no-decision on Sept. 30, which becomes the most in the Majors over a four-year span.
Most of the White Sox highlights came on the pitching side, but Jose Abreu joined Albert Pujols as the only players in Major League history to record at least 30 homers and 100 RBIs in each of their first two seasons. Abreu, Pujols and Ryan Braun are the only three to hit at least 30 homers in their first two seasons.
Adam Eaton fell two runs scored short of reaching 100, which would have been the first time since 2006 that the White Sox had someone with 100 runs scored. The White Sox also led baseball with 74 outs on the bases, per baseball-reference.com, a total that reflects more on the players than coaching or preparation.
"The famous saying is managers get too much hype when the team does well and too much scrutiny when the team does bad," Eaton said. "I truly believe that, because the coaching staff did a great job in Spring Training. It's not the coaching, it's us as players. If the season failed, it's us."