Former Chicago White Sox ace Chris Sale, who was dealt to the Boston Red Sox as part of a blockbuster trade in December, said his highly publicized decision to destroy a set of throwback uniforms during his time with the South Siders was a mistake and a learning experience.
Ian Browne of MLB.com passed along comments from Sale on Wednesday as he began spring training preparations with the Red Sox for the first time. He covered a wide range of topics, including how his emotions got the better of him in the White Sox clubhouse last July.
"Nobody's perfect, you're going to make mistakes," he said. "All I really want to say on that is you live and you learn. I have two sons now. A 6-year-old and a 2-month-old, and I tell them, 'You're going to make mistakes, but if you learn from your mistakes, that's the key.' Everybody here has made a mistake. If you learn from it, you become a better person. If you keep making the same mistakes, you're kind of spinning your tires."
Chicago was scheduled to wear a set of throwback jerseys for a game against the Detroit Tigers on July 23, a contest Sale was slated to start. Instead, he got scratched from the outing after what was initially described as a "clubhouse incident."
Tommy Stokke of FanRagSports later reported the details: "Source says Sale blowup was because he didn't want to wear throwbacks, so he cut the jerseys up so no one could wear them."
The White Sox handed down a five-day suspension for the bizarre situation. Sale explained to Scott Merkin of MLB.com afterward he was unhappy with the decision to wear the jerseys even though he'd raised concerns about them.
"When I saw that there was something in the way of that 100 percent winning mentality, I had an issue," he said. "I tried to bring it up and say, 'Hey listen, these are my thoughts and concerns,' and they got pushed away because of the business deal that was set in place. I'll never understand why we need to do something on the business side on the field that might impede us winning a game."
His new manager, John Farrell, explained to Browne he believes that outlook will actually help him make the transition to the Red Sox.
"That's a fiercely intense competitor," Farrell said. "You're around him here, and he's [a] very genuine guy. But he brings an edge with him in between the lines that will fit in very well here."
All told, his actions in Chicago are now water under the bridge as he prepares to join a star-studded Boston rotation alongside David Price, Rick Porcello, Steven Wright and Drew Pomeranz. It's a group that helps make the Red Sox a top championship contender.