Things are getting really ugly for CC Sabathia. After the big left-hander was knocked around by the Red Sox on Sunday, he gave up seven runs over five innings last night in a 10-6 loss to the Rays.
Sabathia began the outing with a 1-2-3 first inning, but he allowed six runs on six hits and a walk in the second inning. While he settled down from there, it was too big of a hole to climb for the Yankees offense.
Sabathia has now allowed 22 runs (17 earned) in 14 innings over his last three starts, increasing his ERA from 3.99 to 4.65 in the process. Only eight qualified pitchers in the AL have a higher ERA this season. The returns of Derek Jeter and Curtis Granderson will be moot for the Yankees if Sabathia can’t return to form.
By the way, with the win over the Yankees, the Rays hopped over the Red Sox for first place in the American League East. They have won 16 out of their last 18 games.
Your Friday box scores:
Red Sox 0, Orioles 6
Pirates 0, Marlins 2
Rangers 8, Indians 11 (11 innings)
Cardinals 1, Braves 4
Astros 6, Blue Jays 12
Phillies 1, Tigers 2
Mets 11, Nationals 0; Mets 1, Nationals 2
Royals 5, White Sox 1
Brewers 3, Rockies 8
Angels 4, Athletics 6
Padres 0, Diamondbacks 10
Reds 1, Dodgers 2
Cubs 3, Giants 2
Twins 3, Mariners 2 (13 innings)
All spring training there was at least some mild confusion about Nationals first baseman Ryan Zimmerman. He played in almost no regular big league spring training games, instead, staying on the back fields, playing in simulated and minor league contests. When that usually happens, it’s because a player is rehabbing or even hiding an injury, but the Nats insisted that was not the case with Zimmerman. Not everyone believed it. I, for one, was skeptical.
The skepticism was unwarranted, as Zimmerman answered the bell for Opening Day and has played all season. As Jared Diamond of the Wall Street Journal writes today, it was all by design. He skipped spring training because he doesn’t like it and because he thinks it’ll help him avoid late-season injuries and slowdowns, the likes of which he has suffered over the years.
It’s hard to really judge this now, of course. On the one hand Zimmerman has started really slow this season. What’s more, he has started to show signs of warming up only in the past week, after getting almost as many big league, full-speed plate appearances under his belt as a normal spring training would’ve given him. On the other hand, April is his worst month across his entire 14-year career, so one slow April doesn’t really prove anything and, again, Zimmerman and the Nats will consider this a success if he’s healthy and productive in August and September.
It is sort of a missed opportunity, though. Players hate spring training. They really do. if Zimmerman had made a big deal out of skipping it and came out raking this month, I bet a lot more teams would be amenable to letting a veteran or three take it much more easy next spring. Good ideas can be good ideas even if they don’t produce immediately obvious results, but baseball tends to encourage a copycat culture only when someone can point to a stat line or to standings as justification.
Way to ruin it for everyone, Ryan. 😉