Farrell: Sale could be available out of bullpen in Game 3

by
Troy Taormina / Reuters

The Boston Red Sox might have to pull out all the stops Sunday to keep their World Series hopes alive.

Facing a 2-0 deficit in their best-of-five ALDS showdown with the Houston Astros, left-hander Chris Sale may be available for the Red Sox out of the bullpen Sunday at Fenway Park in their must-win Game 3.

"He could be," Red Sox manager John Farrell said Saturday, per Ian Browne of MLB.com.

Sale, a contender for the American League Cy Young, got torched in Game 1 against the Astros on Thursday, serving up seven runs on nine hits - including three homers - over five innings en route to an 8-2 loss in his postseason debut. In 32 regular-season starts, Sale - who crafted a 2.90 ERA (157 ERA+) and 0.97 WHIP - allowed three-plus homers just twice.

He hasn't pitched in relief since 2012, but the six-time All-Star was sensational out of the bullpen in the first two years of his career. Sale made 79 relief appearances for the Chicago White Sox across 2010 and 2011, crafting a 2.58 ERA and 1.10 WHIP before being converted into a starter.