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MLB Chicago White Sox

Rant Sports Top 50 MLB Players of 2014: No. 31 Chris Sale

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

If you could try to find a bright spot on the last-place, 63-win Chicago White Sox in 2013, it was 24-year-old left-handed pitcher Chris Sale. Since joining the White Sox rotation in 2012, Sale has quickly become the pride of the team, although Chicago fell off a bit this past season. Sale will more than likely be the ace of the White Sox for a longtime and that is why he is one of the best players going into 2014.

He was 11-14 with a 3.07 ERA, 226 strikeouts and a 9.5 K/9. His numbers were like no other White Sox pitcher on the staff in 2013. His 11 wins were the most on the team as well as his strikeouts total. Sale’s workload increased pitching in 214 1/3 innings and threw a league-leading four complete games. However, it did not deteriorate is ability to throw the ball well. Although his wins were down, the White Sox offense did not give any of its starters any help during the season finishing last in the American League Central.

Sale has shown his ability to pitch and pitch very well. Especially since he was regulated to the bullpen in his first two seasons, Sale has made a perfect transition to the starting rotation. It could have not worked out better for Chicago. The organization now needs to give Sale and the rest of its pitchers some offense to give them wins. Anytime Sale pitches well and gets left on the hook, it is a detriment to his pitching ability.

For next season, Sale is going to become a force. He will bounce back nicely and could even make an American League Cy Young award run.

Ryan Gaydos is an MLB columnist for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter, “like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.