While many are worried about CC Sabathia‘s diminishing fastball and if he’ll be able to help the Yankees in 2016, there’s one person that’s confident in Sabathia’s abilities despite his regression over the past few years: former Yankees pitcher and ex-teammate Andy Pettitte.
“I am, just because I know what he can do,” Pettitte said Monday while participating in the ‘Captain Camp’ program which mentors minor leaguers in camp. “I watched him too many times, and the command that he has and stuff like that. I say that because I felt like I was able to do that, and I think he’s better than I was. It makes it easy for me to say that.”
Sabathia went 6-10 with a 4.73 ERA but impressed many in his last five starts of the season, going 2-1 with a 2.17 ERA. Sabathia missed the American League Wild Card game after checking into a rehabilitation center for an alcohol addiction. Had the Yankees advanced past the Wild Card game, Sabathia wouldn’t have been on the roster.
“He seems to be doing good,” Pettitte said. “He’s got a great support group with his family, I know that. I just want to see him be successful, not only on the baseball field, but as a husband, as a dad and in life.”
Sabathia is slated to arrive at camp on Thursday, when pitchers and catchers are mandated to report.
— The Yankees announced this morning, they have signed Armando Galarraga to be a pitching coach in the Gulf Coast League. If the name Armando Galarraga sounds familiar, it should: he pitched the perfect game that wasn’t a perfect game against the Cleveland Indians in 2010. (Thanks, Jim Joyce).
— If the Yankees wanted to sign Ike Davis to play first base, unfortunately it’s not going to happen. Davis signed a minor league contract with the Texas Rangers with an invitation to Spring Training, and with Davis off the board, it means the Yankees might rely on internal options to replace Greg Bird at first base in Triple-A. Bird had surgery on his shoulder earlier this month which resulted in him missing the entire 2016 campaign.