The Yankees lost last night which should be good news for tonight with CC Sabathia on the mound.
During the 2017 regular season, Sabathia was 9-0 with a 1.71 ERA in 11 starts following a Yankees loss.
“He’s just such a good pro,” Aaron Boone said on Friday afternoon. “The superlatives, for me, don’t stop with CC. Just the respect I have for him. He’s a star player in our league and from a makeup standpoint, he’s how you want to draw it up. He’s so accountable, he’s so relatable to everyone in the room, young and old. I think there’s a combination of just a professionalism, a competitiveness that allows him to really focus in on when he goes out there.”
Boone is in his first season as manager but he’s no stranger to Sabathia. Boone was the third baseman for the Indians in 2005 and 2006, during which time the lefty won 27 games, and was becoming a workhorse, throwing six complete games in 2006.
“Getting to play with CC kind of in the middle of his career, in the prime of his career, when he was one of the great power pitchers in the game, it’s been fun for me to watch him transition to this portion of his career and become successful, not overwhelming people with stuff anymore,” Boone said.
Boone mentioned that he has watched Sabathia closely over the last couple of seasons, as the former Cy Young award winner has battled through injuries and less velocity.
“The one thing that really impresses me about him, that I think sometimes goes unstated, is what a good athlete he is,” Boone said. “And because of that, it’s allowed him to really have a repeatable delivery, the ability to command any pitch, any time, uses both sides of the plate. The cut fastball, for him, has been a game changer. It’s allowed him to have a presence on the inside part of the plate to good right-handed hitters.”
In his 18th season, Sabathia is in the final years of his career, but he showed in 2017 that he’s not ready for retirement yet. The 250-win and 3,000 strikeout plateaus are in reach for the southpaw, which could help his case for Cooperstown.
“It’s been fun for me to see a guy who I wondered, ‘Could he make that transition with less stuff?’ and he has,” Boone said.