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Red Sox Chris Sale’s 2019 ERA Over/Under Set at 2.60

Chris Sale
Big things are expected of Chris Sale in 2019. Photo by Keith Allison (flickr) [CC License].
  • Chris Sale was 12-4 with a 2.11 ERA and 0.86 WHIP with the Red Sox last season
  • Sale is reportedly close to inking a long-term extension with Boston
  • Sale missed time in 2018 with a shoulder injury and was limited to only 27 starts

Chris Sale has long been one of the most dominant pitchers in baseball and the lines set by Bovada for his season Over/Under bets are reflective of that. Here’s a breakdown of the three bets available and where I think the value is for each one.

Chris Sale Projected 2019 ERA

Chris Sale 2019 Regular Season ERA Odds at Bovada
Over 2.60 -115
Under 2.60 -115

*All odds taken 03/15/19

Chris Sale blew this number out of the water last year posting a 2.11 ERA. In doing so, he proved his 2.17 ERA back in 2014 with the White Sox was no fluke.

Playing in front of one of the best defenses in baseball it would be no surprise if Sale were able to equal his total from last year, but even if he can’t, the kind folks at Bovada have built in a half run cushion for you which makes the under the clear value play.

Pick: Under 2.60

Chris Sale Statistics (Last 5 Years)

Year Record Strikeouts ERA WHIP
2018 12-4 237 2.11 0.86
2017 17-8 308 2.90 0.97
2016 17-10 233 3.34 1.04
2015 13-11 274 3.41 1.09
2014 12-4 208 2.17 0.97

Chris Sale could be on the verge of signing a mega extension with the Red Sox and with these numbers it’s clear to see why both sides would want that. Since joining Boston in 2017, Sale has put up some incredible numbers including a career high in strikeouts in 2017 as well as a career low in ERA last season (min. 22 starts).

Chris Sale Projected 2019 Strikeouts

Chris Sale 2019 Regular Season Strikeouts Odds at Bovada
Over 260.5 -115
Under 260.5 -115

Here’s where things get a little dicey. Despite Sale’s greatness, he did only make 27 starts last season due to injury. When you’re betting the Over/Under on his ERA missing games doesn’t really matter. Here, however, it would matter in a big way. Last season he would have missed this over due to the games missed, but the year prior he blew it out of the water.

If he’s perfectly healthy it’s likely he can top this number, but after signs injuries could be on the horizon plus an extended work load thanks to the World Series run, expect the Red Sox to be cautious if any issues do arise. I’d bet that Sale misses enough games that he also misses hitting the over here.

Pick: Under 260.5 

Chris Sale Projected 2019 Wins

Chris Sale 2019 Regular Season Wins Odds at Bovada
Over 16.5 -115
Under 16.5 -115

Following the same logic as the last prop, can Sale stay healthy enough to win 17 games? Sure he could, but even if he is healthy that’s a lofty win total to put up.

Six pitchers won 17 or more games in the American League last year. That’s a pretty select group. Sale is certainly capable but 17 is actually his career-high, something he has done three times.

When betting props like this, I try to identify where the oddsmakers have left some room for error (like the ERA prop above), but here they haven’t left any.  Bet on 16 or fewer wins for the Red Sox ace.

Pick: Under 16.5

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Ryan has been working at TSN for over nine years, and is now a lead writer and content producer at That's Hockey. Over the years, he's launched and hosted TSN's first NCAAF podcast, The College Football Show, and been featured on the likes of TSN 1050, Sportscentre, and That's Hockey 2Nite.