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Former Eagle Sale named to MLB All-Star team
FGCU baseball All-American and standout Chicago White Sox starter Chris Sale has become the first Eagle to be named to a Major League Baseball All-Star team.
The left-hander's selection to the American League lineup was announced Sunday by Texas Rangers manager Ron Washington, who will lead the team. The 83rd All-Star Game airs at 7:30 p.m. July 10 on Fox.
"It's awesome," Sale told the Chicago Tribune. "It's something I've honestly thought about for a long time -- since I was a kid playing baseball, being a fan of baseball. I was kind of speechless."
The 23-year-old Lakeland native, selected 13th in the 2010 MLB Draft, has compiled a 9-2 record and an AL-best 2.27 ERA in his first season as a starter. Sale is tied for fourth most wins in the AL, while he ranks second in both opponent batting average (.198) and WHIP (0.97), sixth in strikeouts per nine innings (8.87) and ninth with 94 strikeouts over 95.1 innings. He was named AL Pitcher of the Month in May.
Sale's astronomical strikeout numbers in the pros aren't surprising to FGCU faithful, as he ranked fourth in the nation as a junior in 2010 with 146 strikeouts over 103 innings. His 11-0 record, two saves and 2.01 ERA helped the Eagles clinch their third consecutive A-Sun regular season title that year, and he was named 2010 Collegiate Baseball Player of the Year.
Sale became FGCU's sixth former student-athlete to make the pro ranks when he was called up to Chicago in August 2010, but he is the first to be named an All-Star at the highest level.