Chris Sale trolls media with ridiculous belly-ring story

Boston Red Sox ace Chris Sale told reporters today that he was hospitalized during the ALCS because he had an irritation from a belly-button ring, but it was later revealed the belly-ring story was intended as a joke.

“Just constantly taking it in and out, causing irritation and got a rash down there,” Sale told reporters of how the ring caused his hospitalization. “Had to take care of that. Doctors and nurses over at Mass General were awesome. Things happen, you handle them and keep moving forward.”

The incredible story — which turned out to be just that — was just Sale trolling members of the media, one of his Red Sox teammates told USA Today. “He told me he was going to say that,” the player, who chose to remain anonymous, said. “But I didn’t believe him.”

Sale had been scheduled to start Game 5 on Thursday against the Astros, but missed the start after being hospitalized last Sunday with what the Red Sox described at the time as “a stomach illness.”

Red Sox manager Alex Cora said Friday on WEEI in Boston that Sale would start Game 1 of the World Series. The Red Sox open the Fall Classic on Tuesday night at Fenway Park against the winner of today’s Game 7 of the NLCS between the Brewers and Dodgers.

Sale said he lost some weight while out but feels back to 100 percent now. He threw a bullpen session Saturday and said he’s ready to start Game 1 of the World Series on Tuesday in Boston.