Retired Yankees future Hall of Famer, CC Sabathia, feels cheated by the brazen sign-stealing employed by the Red Sox and Astros. Understandable, but…
The Yankees and their Evil Empire (who can believe it) are victims as it turns out. Investigated, tried, and convicted by Commissioner Rob Manfred and MLB are the Houston Astros and Boston Red Sox for (illegally) stealing signs per MLB’s rules.
Both teams happen to represent a “Stop right where you are” barrier to the Yankees march to a World Series appearance in 2017, 2018, and 2019 – the same years as the two teams did their dirty deeds.
The Los Angeles Dodgers were stopped in the World Series as well, first by the Astros in 2017 and then by the Red Sox in 2018. But it is the Yankees who are being given the biggest play in the controversy.
The elephant in the room, of course, being was a World Series title stolen from the Yankees?
CC Sabathia Has No Doubt
CC Sabathia unequivocally says yes, and he’s mighty pissed off about it. Speaking Tuesday night on Showtime’s “Inside The NFL,” Sabathia said:
On one level and so likely, Sabathia’s comments are chalked up to a man lamenting on not being able to pad his baseball resume.
And perhaps in anticipation of what some misguided souls refer to as an “iffy” election to the Baseball Hall of Fame.
On another level, though, this is the same man who literally had to be carried off the field in his final start as a New York Yankee after suffering a painful injury to his shoulder.
This is also the same CC Sabathia who singlehandedly from the pitching side brought New York their last World Championship way back in 2009 when he was plucked off the free-agent table by George Steinbrenner.
A Yankees Warrior
Pride, courage, and perseverance mark the career of CC Sabathia. He’s the man who refused to give in to Father Time, choosing instead to play with two demolished knees in the latter stage of his career, both of which are now in need of replacement.
Not to be discouraged, this is also the same CC Sabathia who re-invented himself as a pitcher after the 95 mph fastball that propelled him to 3,000+ career strikeouts – disappeared.
Still, to hear the same man who achieved all of the above echoing the playground mantra – you cheated – is somewhat disappointing.
Not only that but as I argued in yesterday’s column, the Yankees have no one to blame but themselves – sign-stealing or not – for not performing better than they did offensively over their past three appearances in the postseason.
Consider that as a team, the Yankees hit a woeful .214 against the Astros in the 2019 ALCS.
Over six games, The Bronx Bombers displayed their usual power with ten home runs, but all that power went for naught as they averaged slightly higher than three runs (21) per game.
Like many Yankees fans, I empathize with CC Sabathia. For all the effort he gave and the pain he pitched through, he deserved better.
Yankees: If He’s Hurtin’ – Pick Him Up
Hopefully, the Yankees will figure out a way to keep CC Sabathia in the fold with a responsible job within the organization – if he wants it.
The core of that 2009 team still has Andy Pettitte and Mariano Rivera connected. Jorge Posada has mostly gone his own way, and Derek Jeter has moved as far away from the Yankees as he possibly can.
It might be one of those days where Sabathia “woke up on the wrong side of the bed,” as they say.
But the timing is right for the Yankees to step up now telling the man – “Dude, you gave us everything you had to give. You can still be a big part of this, and this is what we’ve got for you…”