For almost two years, James Paxton was unable to pitch for the Boston Red Sox or any team in the MLB. After finally making his return to the Red Sox, Paxton credited teammate Chris Sale for helping him get back on his feet.
Paxton pitched just one game in 2021 after undergoing Tommy John surgery. He was out for the entire 2022 season. Paxton then dealt with a hamstring injury prior to his 2023 debut. Throughout it all, Sale had Paxton's back and helped guide him back to the mound, via Bob Nightengale of USA Today.
“He's been such a great sounding board for me,” Paxton said of Sale. “We've both been through the injuries, so I've been asking him about coming back, how he handled it mentally, getting it back physically, everything with me.”
“He's had so much success in his career, and look at him now, he's doing it again,” Paxton continued. “It's amazing to watch.
James Paxton suffered his elbow injury while a member of the Seattle Mariners. Still, the Red Sox decided to give him a shot and signed him to a one-year deal with a club option. Boston exercised that option, giving Paxton a path back to pitching.
Upon his return, Paxton has appeared in three 2023 games thus far. He holds a 1-1 record with a 5.14 ERA and a 19/6 K/BB ratio. Paxton's bloated ERA comes from his most recent five-runs-allowed outing. He didn't allow more than two earned runs in his two other starts.
When Paxton was on the injured list, Chris Sale was by his side. Now both healthy, Paxton and Sale can get back to mowing down and hitters and thriving for the Red Sox.