If New York Yankees starter Phil Hughes needs any help getting through Game 6 against the Texas Rangers on Friday night, CC Sabathia will be there to back him up.
Sabathia, who threw 112 pitches in six innings to help the Yankees to a 7-2 victory on Wednesday in Game 5, says he will be available to pitch in relief on Friday.
Sabathia would normally have thrown a between-starts bullpen session on Friday, but he will rest up instead to be ready for bullpen duty, according to Ed Price of Fanhouse.
“I can probably throw 45 pitches (or) 50 tomorrow,” Sabathia said.
Other than two All-Star Games, Sabathia has never pitched in relief as a professional: minors, majors or postseason.
“Let’s see how he feels tomorrow,” manager Joe Girardi said, “but our plan is that he will be available for us.”
Sabathia has made two starts in the series, allowing five runs in only four innings in Game 1, which the Yankees nonetheless won. The last pitcher to make two starts and a relief appearance in a best-of-seven series, according to Price, was Pedro Martinez for the Boston Red Sox in the 2004 ALCS.
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Pirates pitcher Nick Burdi left Monday night’s game agaisnt the Diamondbacks after appearing to seriously injure his arm. Burdi threw a 1-0 fastball to Jarrod Dyson in the top of the eighth inning and immediately grabbed at his right elbow before crumbling to the dirt on the mound. Burdi was visibly in tears on the mound. Just a heartbreaking moment. Don’t watch it if you can avoid it.
Burdi, 26, was once a top prospect in the Twins’ system. The Phillies acquired him in December 2017 in the Rule 5 draft and traded him to the Pirates that same day for international bonus slot money. Burdi underwent Tommy John surgery in 2017 as well. He made his 2018 debut in mid-July after fully rehabilitating.
Burdi allowed five runs on four hits and a walk, recording just one out in Monday’s appearance. He now has a 9.35 ERA with 17 strikeouts and three walks in 8 2/3 innings on the season. It looks like he could be going on the injured list for a while, unfortunately. Hopefully, the injury isn’t anywhere near as bad as it looked. The Pirates should pass along an update on Burdi’s status by tomorrow afternoon.