CHICAGO -- Chris Sale makes no apologies for his intense competitive desire and his overriding will to win. The goal for the White Sox ace is to use that fire to his benefit and not let it get the best of him.
In Friday's loss to Texas, it got the best of him. Sale was shown on the television broadcast slamming his glove down repeatedly in anger on a dugout cooler after he finished his seventh inning, and admitted to yelling at crew chief Jerry Layne during an earlier discussion on Ian Kinsler's inside-the-park homer, when Layne was just trying to calm him down.
"Just like [White Sox pitching coach Don Cooper] and I always talk about, when the wheels start turning, you want to use that momentum and not 'abuse the geek' we call it," Sale said. "Every time I go out there, I compete with everything that I have.
"Hitters expect to go up there and get a hit every time, just like pitchers, every time they take the ball, they expect to pitch well. When you don't, you get frustrated. Sometimes you end up, for lack of a better term, you make an [idiot] out of yourself. Much like I did."
The good-natured 24-year-old could laugh about the episode Tuesday, adding that friends called him, his mom called him and his dad called "making fun of me" after seeing the replay. He was as upset about not supporting an offense that scored five in defeat as he was about allowing eight runs and four homers.
"Obviously, you don't want to lose that fire," Sale said. "At the end of the day, it's better than just accepting the fact that you just got your rear end kicked around for seven innings. You want to find some middle ground and not do that from here on out, but I can't guarantee that. I will definitely work on controlling that, as it's all learning."
Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Merk's Works, and follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.