White Sox ace Chris Sale will start on Thursday against the crosstown Cubs in his first appearance since he was suspended for five days for destroying collared throwback uniforms the team was scheduled to wear.
Manager Robin Ventura says he isn't sure of Sale's plans while he is away from the team, but he expects him to be ready for the outing at Wrigley Field.
The White Sox announced Sale's punishment on Sunday after the left-hander was scratched from his scheduled start and sent home the previous night.
The suspension cost Sale $250,000 of his $9.15 million salary. He was also fined about $12,700.
Sale said Monday quote - "[The '76 uniforms] are uncomfortable and unorthodox. I didn't want to go out there and not be at the top of my game in every aspect that I need to be in. Not only that, but I didn't want anything to alter my mechanics. ... There's a lot of different things that went into it. Looking bad had absolutely zero to do with it. Nothing."
Sale said that the issue dates back to spring 2015, and that he went to pitching coach Don Cooper (twice) and manager Robin Ventura with his concerns, and was rebuffed at each turn. He then took matters into his own hands, and that's how we wound up here. Sale also said his goal remains winning a championship in Chicago, which may or may not help calm the trade rumor waters.
The 27-year-old Sale is 14-3 with a 3.18 ERA this year. There is a possibility he could be traded before the Aug. 1 non-waiver deadline, though it would take quite an offer to get the White Sox to move him.