The Yankees recently re-signed veteran pitcher CC Sabathia to a one-year deal and it sure seems like it was the right move.
Earlier this month it was announced that CC Sabathia had re-signed with the Yankees for one more year, most likely his last year in the majors. When it came out, many people were outraged, why would the Yankees resign a 38-year-old lefty with a knee held together with tape? But it actually makes a lot of sense. Here is why resigning CC was a good idea:
He is a quality pitcher.
In 2018, CC had his best year since becoming a pitcher that relied solely on control and precision. In 2015, CC changed his pitching style from a hard-throwing lefty to a movement and location oriented pitcher. Since that change, CC’s ERA has gone down each year. This year CC was 9-7 with a 3.61 ERA. In 153 innings pitched, CC struck out 140 batters. One reason why the Yankee brought CC back is that he is a groundball/soft contact pitcher.
When pitching in Yankee Stadium, you need to keep the ball out of the air and CC did a great job of that this year owning a 44.4% groundball rate. Finally, CC is only 14 strikeouts away from joining the 3000 strikeouts club and becoming only the third lefty to achieve that feat. This would almost certainly put him in the hall of fame with a Yankees hat.
He is a leader and mentor that everyone wants to play for.
CC has always been a leader and great clubhouse guy. He will run through a wall and give up $500,000 for his teammates. Can you name another player that has done that? I’ll wait… He has also played the game for almost 20 years making him a great resource and mentor for this young Yankees team. Being a lefty pitcher is not easy as there are more righty hitters in baseball than lefties. So C.C. is the person that can teach the Yankees’ young left-handers how to succeed.
Overall, bringing CC back is a great idea. He is still pitching at a decent level and you can’t replace his leadership and experience.