CHICAGO -- Chris Sale admits that there have been talks with the White Sox staff to adjust his starting schedule and give him the maximum amount of rest before and after the All-Star break. Sale could be the first or second starter leading into the break and then the fifth man in the rotation after the Midsummer Classic on July 10.
This first-year starter, who has been dominant enough to be mentioned as the possible American League All-Star starter, also knows innings constraints will be placed on him at some point this season. For now, he's just working start to start and not worried about pitching toward some sort of perceived total.
"You don't want to set a number too high because you feel like you have to reach that," said Sale, who has never pitched more than 136 2/3 innings in a season and enters Friday's start at 80 1/3 innings. "If you set the number too low, then once you get there, you are done. But if you have stuff left in the tank, it's kind of a waste.
"So, we'll just take it day by day. When it comes up, we'll handle it and go from there."
White Sox probables for the Milwaukee series list Sale and then TBA for Saturday and Sunday. Those voids figure to be filled by Philip Humber and Jose Quintana, but the White Sox could throw Dylan Axelrod in the weekend mix to give Sale and Jake Peavy another extra day. Axelrod was called up from Triple-A Charlotte prior to Tuesday's game, replacing Zach Stewart, who returned to Charlotte after Monday's rough start.
Axelrod figures to work in long relief, so the man who made 11 starts for the Knights this season most likely won't get the immediate call. But the White Sox would like to give Sale and Peavy an extra day whenever possible for the next month or so.
"One of the ways to give them that extra break is to give them an extra day," manager Robin Ventura said. "How often that happens, we haven't looked at it that far down the road. For right now it's good."
"Obviously, I want to go out there as many times as I possibly can. That's just me," Sale said. "I know there is going to come a time in the season when we are going to have to sit down and map out what's going to happen. That's a little while away."