NEW YORK -- The White Sox' plans call for Chris Sale to start on Tuesday and again on Sunday, which may jeopardize a potential All-Star Game appearance.
But Sale said on Friday afternoon he has no issue with the schedule and thinks it would be selfish for him to think otherwise. Sale, who improved to 9-2 on Wednesday and leads the America League with a 2.27 ERA, should be a shoe-in when All-Star rosters are announced Sunday.
"I've got to pitch here before I pitch anywhere else," Sale said. "I'd hate for them to have to rearrange things for that to happen. That would be very selfish I think to do. This is important to me. This is my team. This our team. I have to do what's best for us and if that means, if I even make it, not pitching in the All-Star Game, then so be it. It would be cool, but I know we've got more important things going on."
White Sox manager Robin Ventura won't commit to his rotation as being set in stone, but didn't see any reason it would change, either. He has the ability to push Sale back another day --- the team is off Monday --- to Wednesday, which would leave Sale available for the July 10 game in Kansas City. But that appears unlikely to happen.
Even if Sale were to pitch Sunday, however, a new provision in the new Collective Bargaining Agreement leaves him available to pitch in the All-Star Game. Ventura knows what an All-Star Game appearance would mean to Sale and seems open to discussing an appearance if the left-hander is selected.
"(The All-Star Game) is a big thing for him," Ventura said. "For where he started out in spring training and going through it, it's a big deal. It's important and it's fun too for him to actually make the All-Star team and play in it. We'll kind of weigh how he's feeling and how it's going for him."
Second on the team with 95 1 3 innings pitched, Sale -- who had a precautionary MRI on his elbow on May 10 -- said he feels great. He believes the club's plan to spot him extra rest in between starts has helped him to weather any potential health issues. Even if he wouldn't pitch in Kansas City, Sale has no reservations about making the trip.
"I'd probably show up," Sale said with a smile. "Obviously I've got to talk with these guys and figure out what their plan is, and if they'd rather me have a rest, then I'd take the rest. This is what is important to me and something I want to do for the whole season. Like I said, it'd be nice if I do get selected. If I do have the opportunity to pitch, that'd be awesome. But I don't want to deviate from what we have got going on here."