Following the latest setback in CC Sabathia’s recovery from knee problems Yankees manager Joe Girardi admitted to reporters that it’s “fair to say” the former Cy Young winner won’t pitch again this season.
That comes after news that Sabathia needed his knee drained of fluid and is scheduled to be examined by Dr. James Andrews following a minor-league rehab start in which he struggled on the mound and then later experienced knee swelling.
Sabathia is being paid $23 million this season and is owed at least another $23 million in 2015 and $25 million in 2016, plus a $5 million buyout of a vesting 2018 option. Dating back to the beginning of last season he has a 4.87 ERA in 40 starts, the last of which came on May 10.
Microfracture surgery may be required for Sabathia, who’ll turn 34 years old later this month.
Free agent right-hander Henderson Alvarez signed a deal with the Tigres de Quintana Roo of the Mexican Baseball League earlier this week, FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Friday. The righty wasn’t necessarily too fringey a player to hack it in the big leagues, but there were no MLB takers in attendance during his showcase in Venezuela last month and he clearly felt it best to try his luck elsewhere.
The 27-year-old’s last major league gig came with the Phillies, for whom he delivered a 4.30 ERA, 6.8 BB/9 and 3.7 SO/9 over 14 2/3 innings in 2017. While he’s not too far removed from his first and only All-Star bid in 2014, he was besieged by shoulder issues in 2015 and 2016 and underwent season-ending surgeries as a result.
That added injury risk, coupled with the fact that he hasn’t pitched more than 22 innings in a single season since 2014, may have been too much for major league teams to take on this spring. Assuming he steers clear of further injuries, however, a return to the majors may not be entirely out of the question in years to come.