Initially when CC Sabathia underwent stem cell treatment for chronic knee problems the Yankees said he’d be out at least six weeks, but now it’s four weeks later and manager Joe Girardi says the left-hander will probably be out for at least another six weeks.
Girardi has been pessimistic/realistic about Sabathia’s status all along, suggesting back in May that it’s possible he may not pitch again this season. Sabathia advanced to throwing 25 pitches off a mound Monday, but because he needs to build back his arm strength while also being limited by the knee issues the return timetable remains a long one.
Anthony McCarron of the New York Daily News reports that Sabathia “is hoping to beat that estimate.” Naturally. Six weeks from now would be early August, so Sabathia’s return could be sort of like a trade deadline pickup for the Yankees, but obviously no one knows what to expect from him at this point and there’s an awful lot of room for setbacks before than can even be a possibility.
Masahiro Tanaka continue to be lights out in rookie season
The World Series champion Red Sox are scheduled to visit President Trump in the White House on February 15. Some have speculated that manager Álex Cora, who is from Puerto Rico and has been critical of Trump and has been a big factor in Hurricane Maria relief efforts, might not go as a form of protest. Thus far, nothing concrete has been reported on that front.
However, third baseman Rafael Devers says he isn’t going to join the Red Sox on their visit to the White House, Evan Drellich of NBC Sports Boston reports. Devers would prefer to focus on baseball, as the Red Sox open spring training on February 13 and position players have to report on February 17. Per Chris Mason, Devers also said via a translator, “The opportunity was presented and I just wasn’t compelled to go.”
Devers hails from the Dominican Republic and he, like many of Major League Baseball’s foreign-born player base, might not be happy about Trump’s immigration policies. Understandably, he is being tight-lipped about his motivation, but it wouldn’t be surprising if Devers is making a silent protest by choosing not to attend. He is thus far the only member of the team to bow out.
Devers, 22, hit .240/.298/.433 with 21 home runs, 66 RBI, and 59 runs scored in 490 plate appearances last season.
Last year, when the Astros visited Trump at the White House, they did so without Carlos Correa and Carlos Beltrán. Both are from Puerto Rico. It is certainly not unprecedented for individual players to opt out of the White House visit.
No word yet on what food will be served during Boston’s trip to the nation’s capital, but the smart money is on hamberders.