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CC Sabathia’s disappointing season ends with an injury

Sep 23, 2013, 12:16 PM EDT

CC Sabathia, Jonny Gomes AP

CC Sabathia won’t be making his final start of the season, as the Yankees announced that the left-hander suffered a Grade 2 hamstring strain in his most recent start and will need eight weeks or so to recover.

So in one sense it’s actually good timing, because if Sabathia had injured his hamstring earlier in the season the Yankees would have been without him in the rotation for a couple months. On the other hand it’s an abrupt end to a very disappointing season that saw him allow the most earned runs in the league on the way to a career-worst 4.78 ERA in 211 innings.

Sabathia clearly wasn’t his old for most of the season, struggling to maintain his peak velocity after dealing with elbow problems last year. He pitched somewhat better than the ugly ERA would suggest, posting a solid 175/65 K/BB ratio, but his average fastball has fallen from 93.8 miles per hour in 2011 to 92.3 mph last year and 91.1 mph this season. For a 33-year-old with a ton of mileage on his arm, it’s a very worrisome trend.

  1. nbjays - Sep 23, 2013 at 12:23 PM

    Or, in another sense, it is actually BAD timing, and for the exact same reason — if CC had injured his hammy earlier, the Yankees would not have had him in the rotation, piling up bad start after bad start. Of course, that is not to say that whoever replaced him in the rotation wouldn’t have been just as bad…

  2. MLBlogsbig3bosox - Sep 23, 2013 at 12:25 PM

    “So in one sense it’s actually good timing, because if Sabathia had injured his hamstring earlier in the season the Yankees would have been without him in the rotation for a couple months.”

    *Looks at season numbers*

    Are you sure that earlier wouldn’t have been good timing for the Yanks?

  3. tfbuckfutter - Sep 23, 2013 at 12:27 PM

    I find nothing disappointing in his season.

    I’ve enjoyed it immensely.

  4. losangelesfan - Sep 23, 2013 at 12:28 PM

    He lost weight and got worse.

    • bigharold - Sep 23, 2013 at 1:13 PM

      The weight loss wasn’t the issue. In fact in the long run it’ll likely save a lot of wear and tear on his back and knees. Off season elbow surgery meant not off season conditioning for the arm. That’s likely why his velocity went down.

  5. papichulo55 - Sep 23, 2013 at 12:31 PM

    @losangeles, Exactly! Lost weight probably affected his mechanics. Confident he will be better next year. Cy Young? Nope. Just better.

  6. proudlycanadian - Sep 23, 2013 at 12:45 PM

    I guess the Yankees will have to give Phil Hughes a start after all.

  7. TheMorningStar - Sep 23, 2013 at 1:12 PM

    Only 4 years and $96 million to go on his contract.

    Another ‘brilliant’ contract extension from the Yankees front office.

    Will Brian Cashman the GM be fired? Neatly all his transactions have been disastrous.

    • TheMorningStar - Sep 23, 2013 at 1:21 PM

      Neatly all his transactions RECENTLY have been disastrous.

    • 18thstreet - Sep 23, 2013 at 1:29 PM

      I’m as big a Cashman basher as you’ll find on this board, but the moment the Yankees won the 2009 World Series, Sabathia’s contract paid for itself. Anything after that is gravy.

      • TheMorningStar - Sep 23, 2013 at 2:01 PM

        Thats just plain dumb.

        Thankfully Cherington doesnt have that mentality.

        Cashman and the Yankees will be now, and for the forseeable future, reaping what they have sown in the form of massive long term contracts.

      • 18thstreet - Sep 23, 2013 at 2:44 PM

        They have unlimited revenues. Long-term contracts do not handicap the Yankees the way they do almost every other team. And, really, overpaying for a pitcher is a TINY problem for NYY because even a lousy Sabathia can still pitch as a 4th starter while the Yankees spend more money on a better 3rd, 2nd, and 1st starter.

        The Yankees’ real problem right now is that the free agent market has largely dried up. So while they need a new starter or two, the best one available is already on their team. Mike Mussina is not walking through that door. Jimmy Key is not walking through that door. David Cone is not walking through that door. What’s available is Matt Garza.

        What I can never believe is how Yankee fans and critics accept the idea that the Yankees wasting money is a problem for them. They needed a left fielder, and they traded for Vernon Wells. When that didn’t work out, they traded for Alfonzo Soriano. They needed a third baseman for HALF A YEAR (until A-Rod was supposed to return) and they spent $10 million for Kevin Youkilis. Money, they have. It is talent that they cannot find. And that is their problem.

      • TheMorningStar - Sep 23, 2013 at 3:50 PM

        While everything you mentioned is true, you’re missing one key factor: the new owners, the Steinbrener bros, apparantly won’t be spending as freely as old dead George.

        The team is saddled with ridiculous contracts, an absolutely barren farm system (another ‘brilliant’ legacy of Cashman’s), and an order from ownership to NOT spend.

        In hindsight it makes the Sabathia extension even more terrible…which is great for the rest of MLB.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Sep 23, 2013 at 1:51 PM

      thank god we dont judge a contract on one year, nor ignore the previous years either. What team do you work for again?

  8. goawaydog - Sep 23, 2013 at 1:16 PM

    when is his opt out year?

    • TheMorningStar - Sep 23, 2013 at 1:24 PM

      Its 2017, but it vests so long as he doesn’t injure his shoulder in 2016.

      Yankees will be owning him $25 million.

  9. earpaniac - Sep 23, 2013 at 1:23 PM

    This is all the Brewers fault.

  10. aceshigh11 - Sep 23, 2013 at 1:25 PM

    Man, could the Yankees season have gone any worse?

    The fact that they remained in the hunt for the majority of it is remarkable in and of itself.

    • historiophiliac - Sep 23, 2013 at 2:20 PM

      Doom.

  11. caeser12 - Sep 23, 2013 at 1:48 PM

    How fitting.

    Go NY.

  12. whitdog23 - Sep 23, 2013 at 2:18 PM

    how much you wanna bet within two weeks he’s doing something that will make you question he had an injury and was focused on it healing first

  13. crackersnap - Sep 23, 2013 at 2:44 PM

    How does any pro player strain their hamstring this late into the season? Especially a pitcher who, theoretically, has 4 days between starts to do nothing but stretch his body out in preparation for his next start. And in the warmest time of the season, no less. Don’t the trainers these days have daily stretching regimens that they require each player to execute which, by definition, should be preventing exactly this kind of injury?

  14. retief1954 - Sep 23, 2013 at 3:25 PM

    He’s been carryin around about 350 on his big-_ss carcass for years. Sh t’s gonna wear out when you’re that big and outta shape. He’s got Yankee Disease – he’s old. Enjoy payin him the rest of those millions for declining performance, NYY. Couldn’t happen to a more deserving organization.

  15. cackalackyank - Sep 23, 2013 at 3:29 PM

    Can’t help but wonder if that “hammy” has been a problem for awhile. Kind of have to hope that was not the case. History is littered with the ruins of pitchers careers that went south because of arm injuries caused totally or in part by injuries to the legs, knees, ankles, feet, etc. etc. I personally bellieve that it was trying to rush Chein Min Wang back from his Lis Franc injury that caused his other injuries and loss of effectiveness.

  16. sbmcintosh36 - Sep 23, 2013 at 3:54 PM

    Love the Yankee bashing.. it’s jealousy at its finest.
    27
    Sincerely ownership who cares about winning and not raising their margins.

  17. theskinsman - Sep 23, 2013 at 6:05 PM

    Jealous? of what, buying every all star they can for the last 100+ years? No, I think it’s sweet watching the highest payroll in baseball year in and year out finally miss the playoffs.

    • cofran2004 - Sep 24, 2013 at 7:41 AM

      yes. you’re jealous of that. because bought or not, our yankees have 27 championships. how many does your team have?

      • theskinsman - Sep 24, 2013 at 7:02 PM

        Unless you raise the corpses who won those long forgotten WS, it’s as relevant as the Civil War, it happened, but long,long ago.

        If there was a salary cap, i’d be all impressed.Now go watch the good teams as they battle in the playoffs.Or go watch A-Fraud’s trial.

      • cofran2004 - Oct 4, 2013 at 2:58 PM

        yes, 2009… an era so long ago, um… my three year old niece doesnt remember it. good call.

        also, not the point. they were claiming they werent jealous of the yankees for having more success than any other team ever. and then they ripped the team. sure signs of jealousy.

        but good job comprehending. derp.

  18. theskinsman - Oct 4, 2013 at 6:50 PM

    Perhaps a reading comprehension course would assist you.Try a very basic one,since you seem quite challenged. 2009 must be the only WS in the last 100 years? And since the yankoffs kept most of those over the hill players this season, how well did that work out? Twit.

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