Sabathia Does Not Intend To Leave New York

C.C. Sabathia told Mark Hale of the New York Post that he won't "even consider" becoming a free agent after 2011, even though his contract allows him to do so.

"I'm here," Sabathia said, pointing out that his kids go to school in New York, where he lives all year. "Hundred percent."

As Ben Kabak of River. Ave Blues explains, Sabathia’s contract looks like a seven-year $161MM deal, but it’s actually “a three-year contract for $69MM with a player option for four years and $92MM.” As Kabak points out, the opt-out gives Sabathia leverage he could use without actually leaving the Yankees. For example, he could ask for another guaranteed year or re-negotiate the contract completely.

The Yankees are presumably eyeing Cliff Lee and they can count on Phil Hughes, A.J. Burnett and Joba Chamberlain even if Andy Pettitte retires, but Sabathia’s presence in the rotation matters immensely.

111 Responses to Sabathia Does Not Intend To Leave New York Leave a Reply

  1. R_y_a_n 5 years ago


  2. That’s a pretty good thing to hear for Yankee fans.

  3. Why would he? Is this even news?

  4. I thought he lived in NJ

    • Dexter_Morgan 5 years ago

      he does, Alpine, NJ. Which is a hop skip and a jump from Yankee Stadium. He just didn’t want to confuse people

    • fitz 5 years ago

      Hey, if we’re using technicalities it’s the New Jersey Jets and Giants but hey New York is just soooo much cooler.

  5. NYY92 5 years ago

    good news for us yankee fans.hes been worth every penny of his contract,shutup all the naysayers who said he couldint pitch in the pressure of New york with there media and constant pressure of performing as well as pitching good in the playoffs.but i highly doubt he would leave anyway,the economy wouldint allow him to get a better deal then hes sisgned to,hes got the security both financially and mentally knowing where he will be plus his kids and him are said to bigh on the city of new york.should furter supplant the good rotation.great call

  6. dc21892 5 years ago

    Why would he opt out of that contract? NO ONE would pay that kind of money to land him again if he did. He knows better than to leave all that money behind.

    • nictonjr 5 years ago

      He could pull an ARod. Depending on the Lee contract. If he gets 5/125 CC may ‘opt out’ to be paid more. Worked for ARod. What does he have left?? Seven years???

      • bjsguess 5 years ago

        You sir win!Everyone, AND I MEAN EVERYONE, said exactly the same thing about A-Rod. Then he opted out and shocked baseball. Found no one willing to come close to his previous salary of $25m (rumors were that nobody was prepared to go above $20m), so he re-ups with the Yankees for more years and more annual salary.If CC continues to have success it wouldn’t be shock to see him opt out and be able to land more money elsewhere OR just use it as leverage for a better deal.

        • moonraker45 5 years ago

          A rod also opted out mid game 4 of the world series. You have to anticipate CC having more class and sense than that

  7. jwredsox 5 years ago

    Anyone else concerned about his performance this year and in the future? Sure he has been very good but his K% (until recently it was below 7) is low and he hasn’t pitched like a true ace. Plus he has like 5years left.

    • dc21892 5 years ago

      As a Sox fan, I’m loving it. IMO, he logged too many innings while with Cleveland/Milwaukee the year before he signed his deal. His stuff is still solid but it seems to me that he lost his dominance. Don’t get me wrong though, he’s still a hell of a pitcher.

      • As a Yanks fan, I’m loving the fact that 40% of the Red Sox games over the next 4 years will be started by either Lackey or Beckett. IF they can stay healthy That makes me smile.

        • East Coast Bias 5 years ago

          Ehh, it could just as easily be Lester and Buchholz though. That’s a tough lefty righty matchup for any line up!

          • johnsilver 5 years ago

            Matched up by a 30M dollar Sabathia and AJ Burnett…

      • Lost his dominance? Yeah I guess so when the guy leads the AL in wins, has 15 straight wins at home, and has a 3.09 ERA against the AL East. I repeat, AL East. He has an overall ERA near to sub-3.00. And has one of the best fastballs in the MLB, and in 100 degree weather in KC when the Yanks where there, he threw changeups OVER 90 MPH. That’s Strasburg Level. CC Sabathia is one of the most dominant and consistent pitchers in the MLB, and has gotten off to a better start this year then last year. I don’t know what “dominance” means to you, I guess it’s only getting strikeouts. True “dominance” is something CC has done the past couple of years and can “dominate” the game as much as anyone, and he will, if he has to, use the strikeout.

        • jwredsox 5 years ago

          Why does it matter how hard the change up is? Josh Beckett’s Changeup is almost 88 MPH. I repeat, ALMOST 88 MPH. That is almost Strasburg level?

          • It does matter because a changeup like that, with that velocity, will throw hitters completely off balance. And please talk to me when Beckett’s ERA isn’t around 6.60.

          • jwredsox 5 years ago

            I was poking fun at you.

    • Ferrariman 5 years ago

      not pitched like an ace? WTF do you want? a 3 era, leading the league in wins, already 180+ innings, keeps you in every game, allstar, what is your definition of an ace? cy young or bust?

      • moonraker45 5 years ago

        the kid is clearly confused.

      • jwredsox 5 years ago

        Sorry true ace wasn’t the right words but his K% is declining, His changeup and fastball haven’t been as dominating this year, his walks up up (marginally), his fastball has been slower, hitters are making the most contact since ’03, hiszone% is the worst of his career, His FIP has been around 3.5 the past 2 years and his xFIP at 3.8. Heavens there is concern of aging.

        • Yanks48 5 years ago

          Hes still better than Lester, Beckett, and Dice-K

          • jwredsox 5 years ago

            Yes to Beckett and Dice-K bu you are biased to say Sabathia is better than Lester. Lester Ks a lot more and gets more groundballs. Not even bothering with this argument

          • Probably, but still, Lester hasn’t become a complete pitcher. That coming after giving up 9 ER against the Slugging Jays.

          • ellisburks 5 years ago

            Lester also costs the Red Sox hundreds of millions less. So I think that is a win there.

          • He hasn’t logged in as many innings, and while he gets the strikeout alot more, you have to admit he’s streaky somtimes. There was a period of time Last year, and then this year too, where hitters could hit anything he threw at the plate for 440 feet.

          • jwredsox 5 years ago

            What do you want to see Lester improve on? Pitching better on 8/20/2010 against Toronto? That stuff happens. But saying he has to improve based on one single a bad start against a good team is hilarious.

          • IHateJoeBuck 5 years ago

            And I believe CC got lit up against Boston in the season opener.

          • MaineSox 5 years ago

            I’m not by any means agreeing with Henry but I do wish, just once, Lester could win a game in April…

          • BaseballFanatic0707 5 years ago

            Yeah, slow down on that RS hate, there. Lester is one of the best lefty starters in the game right now. He’s better than CC easily.

          • Yanks48 5 years ago

            Thats not what Lester showed in his last start. But we will see at seasons end

          • BaseballFanatic0707 5 years ago

            One bad start is not indicative of a pitcher’s ability. Cliff Lee has sucked major against the Orioles (5th worst .wOBA in MLB). There’s nothing to take of that. Stuff like that is an outlier.

          • jwsox 5 years ago

            better than lee?, lets not be biased here Lester is awesome but better than cliff lee or Johan…..dont think so, right up there with them but not the best….hell john danks is in the discussion of best lefties in the game

          • BaseballFanatic0707 5 years ago

            He’s better than Johan. His peripherals are all overall better than his, and Lester is on the upside of his career, whereas Johan is on the downside.

            I’ll edit to say one of the best, though.

          • Not Easily. If they ever faced off I think CC would win, and if wins in regular season don’t mean anything in October-November, Lester hasn’t exactly dominated in the postseason. Not at least the way CC did(and of Lester’s caliber, I would expect him to do so, actually).

          • jwredsox 5 years ago

            Lester has a postseason ERA of 2.57. CC Sabathia has a 4.40 ERA. Not that Postseason stats hold much value.

          • Most of those stats coming from w/ the terribly overworking Brewers and Indians. Besides Lester got hit against the Angels. Youre talking like you didn’t see CC pitch in the postseason. And yeah, postseason stats matter to an extent. They reflect on your performance.

          • jwredsox 5 years ago

            he went 6 innings with 3 ER against the angels in his only start. But you said it before like CC was so much better than Lester that it tipped the scales which is apparently doesn’t. And most of those bad numbers come from when he was in Cleveland in 07.

          • BaseballFanatic0707 5 years ago

            Honestly, short of, what, one start-Jon Lester has effectively made the Yankees his female dog. He and Cliff Lee are the two starters in the AL that make me absolutely cringe.

        • BaseballFanatic0707 5 years ago

          I chalk it up more to the division he’s pitching in moreso than aging. He’s had much stiffer offensive competition in the AL East than he’s had in the Central of both leagues.

        • His changeup and fastball have been as dominating as ever! Please don’t talk about CC when the only start you saw him pitching was Opening day at the Red Sox!
          P.S. A True Ace is a complete pitcher. To you it’s only a thrower who gets a whole bunch of K’s but that ain’t it.

          • jwredsox 5 years ago

            Pitch values have his Change up being a lot less dominating than last year and his fastball is also less dominating. And a strike out pitcher =/= thrower.

    • BaseballFanatic0707 5 years ago

      Uhhh….what CC have you been watching to say he hasn’t pitched like a true ace? Since when was striking out a high percent indicative of being a true ace? Heck, it wasn’t until this year that Roy Halladay broke the 8 K/9 plateau, but would you argue he hasn’t been a true ace since 02? In fact, CC is following the Halladay model-pitch to contact, get groundball outs, eat up an exorbitant amount of innings while not having to throw a bajillion pitches to do so. His FIP and xFIP are still healthy despite a drop in Ks. I also never really understand the fascination with CC as a pure strike-out guy-only twice in his career has he had a K/9 above 8-in 06 and 08.CC was on record last year during quite a few post-game interviews on YES as saying that he planned on incorporating a full arsenal of pitches in an effort to get more ground-ball outs at the expense of strike outs, since he knows it will do his arm good as he’ll throw fewer pitches that way while maximizing his innings.

      • Yanks48 5 years ago

        Hes a Red sox fan who cares

      • jwredsox 5 years ago

        The Halladay and CC comparison is a bad one. Yes that is how Halladay works but notice how when he K’ed less than 7 his GB% was near 60% and how when his K% was in the high 7s his GB% was in the 50% range, not to mention he had plus control. Pitchers will have a tough time surviving striking less than 7 with a GB% of 50%. Especially with a walk rate over 2. Simply not enough outs and the chances of Flyballs and LDs goes up. My concern is when his Ks drop into that level he won’t get enough groundballs to offset it.

        • BaseballFanatic0707 5 years ago

          I’m not saying there’s an equal ground comparison between the two, just that there is a small similarity. Trust me, I’m well aware that Halladay is in his own level of elite.

          • jwredsox 5 years ago

            It was more leading into the GB% point using Halladay as an example.

    • drumzalicious 5 years ago

      Santana hasn’t been striking out the same amount of batters either but he has been an ace

  8. Ferrariman 5 years ago

    i still wouldn’t be shocked if he opted out of his remaining 4/92 deal to try to get more years. he would literally be the only appealing pitcher in that years free agent market and can really be in the drivers seat with the yankees throwing cash around like candy.

  9. Slopeboy 5 years ago

    I’m really, really concerned, he may only win 20 this year and the Cy Young as well but not be able to do every year afterwards like a true ace.

    • Ok, CC has pitched like an ace this year, but if he wins the CY Young it will be a shame, there are other pitchers much more deserving. But I think there are legit concerns about him going foward, maybe not the immediate future but the the last few years of his deal are extremely risky. The guy has logged so many innings, he’s huge, I mean I don’t see how you couldn’t admit its a huge risk. A risk the Yankees can afford to make, but still its a risk.

      • I actually think him being so huge is going to help him. When he is pitching, it looks like he is putting minimal effort into the pitch. Compare him to someone like Lincecum for example. Say they are both throwing 95 mph. The baseballs are the same weight so the force they generate to throw it 95 mph is the same. Spread that force out over Timmy’s body and CC’s body and you can see that the amount of strain on CC’s body really is not that much compared to other pitchers.

        • drumzalicious 5 years ago

          ahh Physics . . . I like it.

          • MaineSox 5 years ago

            Yes physics, fantastic. He isn’t a machine though, what about his knees, back, or hips from carrying/throwing the extra weight around? Even if his arm is still good he can’t pitch sitting in a chair.

      • If that’s the case he would have collapsed in Milwaukee. CC actually pitched every 3 days there(which says alot about their staff) and going forward, i think it will help him, being so big. At least he will be much better than dead arm javy vazquez

      • Slopeboy 5 years ago

        I’m detecting a little anti-Yankee bias here concerning who deserves the CY. That’s Ok. More to the point about CC’s future, what you say could be said about any pitcher.who throws lots of innings True he has logged more innings than many of today’s starters but he has never be injured, and is a strong man that takes care of himself .You shouldn’t confuse his size with being obese. Granted he wouldn’t look good in a Speedo ,but he is not a soft rolly-polly type guy, this is a guy who is large but works hard. There are plenty of big men in Baseball history who threw for lots of innings for a long time and didn’t break down. As he gets older, he’ll adjust to getting more outs without the strike outs and the Yankee mgr will surely cut his innings as needed.NY took a risk that’s woth the money.

        • 0bsessions 5 years ago

          “I’m detecting a little anti-Yankee bias here concerning who deserves the CY.”

          Not anti-Yankee bias, just common sense. Statistically speaking, Sabathia isn’t even top three in his own division, much less Cy worthy (He’s behind Morrow, Lester, Romero and Price for FIP and just a shade above Buchholz). Even going by simpler stats like ERA, he’s still trailing both Buchholz and Price.

          Cliff Lee is the clear Cy leader for the AL this season. Sabathia shouldn’t even sniff the award.

          • Slopeboy 5 years ago

            ” Not anti-Yankee bias, just common sense” Oh Really? You throw out one incidental Sabermetric stat, ERA and four pitchers that statistically speaking don’t belong in the conversation. Nowhere in your posting do you bring the up wins, K’s or IP stats,are they too simple or don’t they account for anything? Morrow does not belong in the group, Romero,while having a nice year has no chance and Lester, aside FIP, his record is nothing to write home about. Cliff Lee is 10-8 overall with an ERA of 3+. His CY lead doesn’t look too secure. Had you said Sabathia trails Bucholz and Price and compared their overall records,your “common sense’ statement would be believable. As it stands, it’s not anti-Yankee bias as much as it’s anti-CC bias.

          • 0bsessions 5 years ago

            Wow. Afraid of math, much? Seriously, ask anyone who actually knows anything about baseball: wins are only considered a useful stat for pitchers by the utterly inept. John Lackey has more wins than Lee. Would you really say Lackey is the better pitcher right now?

            Bluntly speaking, yes, Wins and innings pitched ARE too simple. A crappy pitcher (Not to say Sabathia is crappy) on a good team can wrack up a ton of both. And you want to go into K’s? Fine: Lester has thirty more K’s than the Mighty Sabathia in two less starts and Lee has exactly as many in FIVE less starts (While also logging only about a game’s worth of IP in those five less starts).

            I’m not trying to make the argument that Sabathia is not currently a great pitcher, he is. That said, he’s not even close to being the odds on favorite for Cy Young statistically. He’s not even the best pitcher in his division, statistically speaking. Going by advanced metrics like WAR and FIP, Lester tops him. Going by simple stats like ERA, Buchholz mops the floor with him.

            Your argument simply does not have a leg to stand on. Multiple pitchers have performed better than Sabathia has, he just has the advantage of having a ton of run support.

          • Slopeboy 5 years ago

            Really!! The Yankees gave him the big bucks because they were blown away with his FIP and WAR, and possibly his WHIP. Please!!
            I’m a caveman, stumbled through basic geometry in high school and really find many of these Sabermetric stats nothing more than overkill. I really don’t care to know how a guy hits in the daytime when the tempreture is 80 degress as opposed to the evening, or the ERA of a pitcher in the 7th inning during a night game. Baseball, the game on the field,has been a simple game for a hundred years and it basically hasn’tchanged except for the Salaries and today’s stats. If you like to over analyze- knock yourself out!
            All I need is to see the player, make some simple comparisions and come to a conclusion.

            By the way, where does King Felix in Seattle rate in this CY discussion?

  10. icedrake523 5 years ago

    He’d be stupid to opt out because no team would even match the remaining years and salary.

    • BaseballFanatic0707 5 years ago

      That’s my belief. A-Rod did it because there were actually avenues for him to explore. CC? The Angels were the only other team that could come close, and they are probably going to go hard for Carl Crawford this year. Even missing out on him, I don’t think they would be willing to offer more than 23 per year, as their offer was similar to the Yanks initial offer, but less as I recall.

  11. moboiler 5 years ago

    the yankees can “count on” joba chamberlain? did i read that right?

    • A-Rod is/was pure greed. I think CC is a whole different type of person and is able to be content with only 20 million per year.

      • 0bsessions 5 years ago

        If money wasn’t a chief motivating factor for Sabathia, he would’ve stuck with the West coast, as was his expressed desire. If he thinks he can get more money, he will go for it. Just because a guy is less greedy than A-Rod doesn’t mean he’ll turn down a shot at a few extra million.

  12. InvalidUserID 5 years ago

    CC has been everything that the Yankees have lacked in the past few seasons: a workhorse who gives them a very good chance at winning every game. Even CMWang, who won 19-games twice, wasn’t on the same level as CC.

  13. FxFrenikk 5 years ago

    Sabathia also intended not to leave Cleveland. Just saying for what it’s worth.

  14. YanksFanSince78 5 years ago

    This conversation is about to debase into a “My dad can beat yourdad conversation”. CC is a different CC than the one that pitched for the Indians and Brewers in terms of his approach. No longer does he feel like he has to strike every batter out or pitch a 9 inning complete game in order to win.

    His FB velocity is about the same. According to fangraphs his vel in 09 was 94.2 and in 2010 93.6. His career high was 94.7 in 2007. Between 2006-2008 the avg was around 93 mph so you can’t say he’s lost anything.

    He throws the CH about the same frequency but he admits that the big difference now is that Eiland (or someone in the Yanks org) changed his grip and has made it a better pitch. Another change he said is he doesn’t throw it for a ko as much as he throws it to induce weak GB, especially when he throws it to RH on the outside corner.

    One thing I like about CC is when he needs the ko (when runners are in scoring position) he seems to get the ko to get himself out of a jam.

  15. YanksFanSince78 5 years ago

    Also, I just have a question. Never or seldom will a Yanks fan and Sox fan be on the same side of an arguement, but in what way is Lester clearly better than CC?

    Let’s take a look.

    Avg ERA over the last 3 years? CC @ 3.03 vs Lester @ 3.29

    Avg ERA+ over the last 3 years? CC @ 130 vs Lester @ 1.39

    Avg whip over the last 3 years? CC @ 1.16 @ vs Lester @ 1.22

    Avp FIP over the last 3 years? CC @ 3.10 vs Lester @ 3.34

    Avg xFIP over the last 3 years? CC @ 3.60 vs Lester @ 3.52

    Avg IP over the last 3 years? CC @ 223 vs Lester @ 192 (using current 2010 IP)

    Avg KO over the last 3 years? CC @ 200 vs Lester @ 181 (using current 2010 stats)

    Avg K/9 ……………………..? CC @ 7.96 vs Lester @ 8.54

    Avg BB/9 ……………………? CC @ vs Lester @ 2.55 @ 2.95

    Avg HR/9…………………….? CC @ .70 vs Lester @ .72

    CC’s 3 year WAR: Avg of: 5.72 Total of: 17.2 WAR

    JL’s 3 year WAR: Avg of: 5.16 WAR Total of: 15.5 WAR

    So in every statistical measure, aside from a .06 xFIP and a 0.58 in K/9, CC beats Jon Lester so why and based on what stats are people saying that Lester is CLEARLY better than CC?

    Now keep in mind, I’m not arguing future potential performance, their current team costs or who looks better in a pair of Jordache jeans. Just in terms of performance. So why is Lester considered OBVIOUSLY better than CC again?

    • jwredsox 5 years ago

      Well I noticed you used the last 3 years for your stats when Lester wasn’t the same pitcher in 08 as he was in 2010. The 09 and 2010 Lester is a top lefty in the game. The 08 Lester had a bad K/9, a lucky ERA, and was nowhere near top in the league. Your issue was the range you used.

    • jwredsox 5 years ago

      Last 2 seasons

      Avg ERA over the last 2 years? CC @ 3.21 vs Lester @ 3.34

      Avg ERA+ over the last 2 years? CC @ 130 vs Lester @ 136

      Avg whip over the last 2 years? CC @ 1.18 @ vs Lester @ 1.209

      Avg IP over the last 2 years? CC @ 209 vs Lester @ 183 (using current 2010 IP)

      Avg KO over the last 2 years? CC @ 174 vs Lester @ 196 (using current 2010 stats)

      Avg K/9 ……………………..? CC @ 7.5 vs Lester @ 9.6

      Avg BB/9 ……………………? CC @ vs Lester @ 2.8 @ 3.0

      Avg HR/9…………………….? CC @ .70 vs Lester @ .80

      CC’s 2 year WAR Total of: 8.3 WAR

      JL’s 2 year WAR Total of: 9.3 WAR

      And I can’t find avg FIP and xFIP but lester leads both. Including xFIP by a large margin

      • Slopeboy 5 years ago

        This also goes to YanksFanSince 78

        There are Lies…Damn Lies… and Statistics… Lester is one of the current great pitchers who is having another great year.Take all the numbers you want… according to me and my dish I’ll bet my last dollar on CC.

    • johnsilver 5 years ago

      YFS78, Believe you should also take into account Lester’s cancer also in 2008 and the fact he was pitching with reduced velocity that entire year which shows in the lower K rate as compared with 2009-2010. I understand that statistically knocks him down according to the charts you have made there.

      One other important factor that maybe is even more telling, is just how much is a true #1 actually worth when the difference is so minimal? Is it over 100M?

  16. A pitcher doesn’t need to strike out every single batter to be considered a dominant pitcher or an ace for that matter. Look at Gred Maddux or Mike Mussina. Granted, in their original prime, they struck out batters left and right, however, as they got a bit older they developed into smarter (who thought that could be possible with those two especially) pitchers that made every pitch they threw count. Anyway, less strikeouts means less pitches thrown for C.C. on average (unless of course he gets into a lot of 3-2 counts or walks people, this is just for arguments sake though). I’m just as happy watching him get nice and easy groundball outs as I am watching him strike out the side. Either way, he records outs better than a lot of pitchers. If nothing else, he eats up innings and gives your bullpen a rest, something the Yankees need at times depending on which A.J. Burnett shows up that day.

  17. YanksFanSince78 5 years ago

    I used the last 3 years because that’s as many years as Lester has been a full-time starter. Wasn’t an arbitrary decision. If you want to break it down to the last 2 years then go ahead. What’s next? The best lefty this year? If so then that probably goes to David Price. You can have an opinion. That’s fine but to say that Lester is CLEARLY better than CC based on 2 out 10 stat categoreys over the 2 years YOU decide to give emphasis on doesn’t get it done.

    Now a gun in itself isn’t an inherently bad “creatiion”. Put one in the hand of a child, an idiot or someone w/ bad intentions and it’s a horrible “creation”. New baseball metrics are the same. I will take the blame for mentioning xFIP into the conversation but I literally was throwing the kitchen sink out there to cover any metric anyone might use in comparing the two players.

    xFIP: Expected Fielding Independent Pitching. This is an experimental stat that adjusts FIP and “normalizes” the home run component. Research has shown that home runs allowed are pretty much a function of flyballs allowed and home park, so xFIP is based on the average number of home runs allowed per outfield fly. Theoretically, this should be a better predicter of a pitcher’s future ERA.


    This stat should ONLY be used to PREDICT a trend as to a pitchers future ERA etc and to “guestimate” or evaluate which way a pitchers performance is headed. It SHOULD NOT be used in any fashion to analyze a pitchers past or current performance. The fact that CC’s xFIP grew from about 3.40 from 2006-2008 to 3.85 since moving to NYS shouldn’t really be a surprise. But all it is, is the guessing of a pitchers flyball rate and the home park factors. Flyballs in Oakland are not going to be HRS as often in NYS.

    The more relevant stats for evaluating current/past performances are:

    FIP: Fielding Independent Pitching, a measure of all those things for which a pitcher is specifically responsible.

    CC’s FIP over the last 2 years = 3.49
    JL’s FIP………………………… = 3.19

    ERA+ : ERA measured against the league average, and adjusted for ballpark factors. An ERA+ over 100 is better than average, less than 100 is below average.

    CC’s avg ERA+ over the last 2 years = 130
    JL’s —————————— = 136

    In either case Lester has a slight edge over CC over the last two years in those two categories. Overall, CC still beats Lester in quite a few others. Taking the overall win/lost comparison, HOW IS LESTER “OBVIOUSLY” BETTER THAN CC???

    I have no problem saying that they THINK or FEEL Lester is better. What I don’t like is when someone PROCLAIMS it as an imperical fact beyond dispute. This isn’t FOX News and you aren’t Glenn Beck or Sean Hannity. You must ‘splain yourself Lucy!!!! We don’t beleive you, you need more people (Jay Z reference).

    • jwredsox 5 years ago

      Because there are also other things behind performance statistics. One thing about pitching is that it is all about how you get outs. There is a line a pitcher must walk to be successful when it comes to how they get those outs. The most efficient way to get outs is on the strike out. No risk of a hit (outside of dropped 3rd strike). There are ground balls that are 2nd most efficient, flyballs, which are efficient but yield homeruns, and line drives which are most dangerous. (note there are infield popups but those are rare). Now a pitcher has theoretically 27 outs that he needs to get in a game. A pitcher who K’s 9 of those outs only has 18 outs in play. Add a 50% GB% and you have 9 outs that are Fly balls and LDs. That pitcher makes more safe outs and has less of a chance for homeruns or base hits. Another type of pitcher Ks 5 per game and has a GB% of 50% too. That pitcher is left with 11 dangerous outs. Those 2 outs make a difference and it is obvious that the first pitcher is going to have a better season assuming LD% and FB% are the same. The problem with low K pitchers is that they have to have high GB% to survive. How many Fly ball pitchers do can you name with low 6 K% that are successful (and not lucky)? Not many, they don’t make enough safe outs. I’ll take Lester and CC separate.Lester: Lester’s dominance comes from his low 9s K/9 and high GB% 54.2% (9th in the league) and his FB% and LD% (he also has the 9th best FB% and 18th in LD%) down. He has less dangerous outs to work with and thus gets a lot more harmless ground balls that can lead to double plays and rarely lead to base hits (as appose to LDs which has is a base hit 4/10 times). This ability to have a K/9 over 9 with a GB% near 55% is dominance and few pitchers in the league can do this. CC Sabathia: He has a low 7s K with a good 50% GB%. This means he has 10 outs that are dangerous. And I’m sure you are wondering what is so dangerous about one more FB or LD out. We 1 more FB can be a HR or 1 more LD can be another base hit. Case and point: that one out in baseball is a big deal. CC actually gives up less LDs than Lester but more FBs. This makes CC more susceptible to homeruns than Lester. This combination of lower GB% and K/9 than Lester makes CC less dominating of a pitcher than Lester. Certainly CC is going to have games where he does throw the equivalent of a 9 K/9 (6innings 6Ks) and those are the games where he is going to be more dominant. But as the season averages out Lester is going to have a better chance of getting that dominant game when you need it. Games where either have that 50% GB% with 3ks are flukish and lucky (hence why we have FIP and xFIP). Simple: Lester is more dominant because his higher GB% and K/9 allow him to make more outs less dangerously. Over the course of a season Lester is more likely to have more dominant games than CC.(And I know walks and errors are also involved but I omitted walks because both BB/9 are about the same and errors can’t be controlled)

      Edit: Is that better than 2/10 stat categories bro?

      • moonraker45 5 years ago

        Not everything in baseball can be reduced to numbers, CC has a mound presence and intimidation factor that lester would be lucky to develop. I hate both the red sox and yankees so i’m truly impartial but if you asked me to start a new team and to pick an ace, i’d take Sabathia over Lester any day.

    • jwredsox 5 years ago

      And while I agree on the fact xFIP is for prediction mostly you don’t apparently know the difference. The only difference between xFIP and FIP is that xFIP takes the pitchers HR/FB rate and replaces it with a normalized rate. Ball park factor doesn’t play into it so the fact he moved to Yankee Stadium makes no difference since the HR/FB is the same for every player.

  18. moonraker45 5 years ago

    All this talk about lester vs cc, cc vs lee, lee vs lester.. Some of you guys need to realize that stats are NOT everything. So going to fangraphs or baseballreference or any other stat site doesn’t give you some sublime knowledge of whos better or not.

    The reality is that most things in baseball can be put in to numbers, but some things cant. For instance, there are certain pitchers, who don’t care as much about their numbers as getting the win, so with hefty run support they are more susceptible to hits, ER and giving up HR’s. I watched Doc for years and if he was ever spotted a decent lead, he let the defense do the work, which also meant he may be more inclined to poorer stats.

    Secondly, and probably most importantly what doesnt show up on the stat line is what I call ‘ace tendencies’ mound presence, fierceness, intensity, the ability to have a bad inning, have your team tie the game back up for you and despite giving up 3 runs in the first you come back out and shut the door the rest of the way.

    Some of you rely too heavily on stats, you need to realize that at the end of the day these are human beings not robots, theres intangibles regardless of stat lines.

  19. BaseballFanatic0707 5 years ago

    Can you believe he’s listed as 290 lbs? I mean I know he’s like 6’7, but 290? I call bs.

  20. TheNational87 5 years ago

    Oh, I get it … it’s because Sabathia is a big guy. Man, that’s an incredibly original observation! With wit of that caliber, it’s a wonder the geniuses behind “Two and a Half Men” aren’t trying to woo you.

  21. stop_your_bloody_screamin 5 years ago

    …”besides, the food is so much better in New York than any other Major League city except for maybe…..Boston?, But that’s about it”

  22. bleachercreature 5 years ago

    yeah but still, I thought it was pretty funny

  23. Regardless of what you think about “Two and a Half Men,” Chuck Lorre is actually a pretty genius person. And no, I do not like that show either.

  24. BaseballFanatic0707 5 years ago

    God forbid someone makes a little quip about a guy’s weight in jest.

  25. moonraker45 5 years ago

    😮 someone told a joke on the internet, how dare they!!!

  26. Lol…defensive much?

  27. East Coast Bias 5 years ago

    hahaaha awesome post!

  28. TheNational87 5 years ago

    More brilliance.

  29. Brandon Woodworth 5 years ago

    You rage, you lose.

  30. moonraker45 5 years ago

    When the 4th place team is leading the league in Home Runs and extra base hits, you know its rough

  31. BaseballFanatic0707 5 years ago

    Just to back you up, the Rays, Red Sox, and Blue Jays all rank in the top 10 in wOBA (Yanks do, too, but not important to the point).

    The Orioles are such slackers (5th worst in MLB)

  32. jwredsox 5 years ago

    You would be right but even then he has had a nice schedule this year he has faced the Seattle offense 3 times, Bal 4, KC 2, Oak 2, Cle 2. That should be more than enough to offset his 7 combined games vs the Sox and Rays. Especially since being an ace he should be able to shut those two down atleast 2 times (which he has). And he hasn’t had a sinlge game vs Toronto this year.

  33. jwsox 5 years ago

    just because you hit alot of home runs does not mean your a “rough team”….

  34. No, i’m not comparing him in anyway. I just said he threw a couple of changeups in pure heat, and when he threw those pitches that was strasbrug esque.

  35. Ian_Smell 5 years ago

    He’ll do it in his post-game interview.

  36. Ferrariman 5 years ago

    actually, yes it does. you know that no lead is ever safe when you deal with a team like the jays.

  37. moonraker45 5 years ago

    If mlbtr kept a top 10 list of dumbest post this would be near the top and you would frequent the list often.

  38. East Coast Bias 5 years ago

    Word. I was just going to say that. The greater difference in velocity between changeup and fastball, the more effective the changeup is.

  39. johnsilver 5 years ago

    It pretty much means your pitching stinks overall.

  40. jwredsox 5 years ago

    FIP and xFIP begs to differ that they are the same. FIP says CC’s ERA should be around 3.40 and Lester’s at 3.20 which is a big difference to me when we are talking aces. And xFIP is just all in Lester’s favor. With CC around 3.80 and lester around 3.23

  41. jwredsox 5 years ago

    Wins are crap. That’s all I have to say.

  42. jwredsox 5 years ago

    As long as a pitcher can give up 9 runs in 5 innings and still be able to get a win while another pitcher can give up 0 runs in 8 innings and not win they are a terrible stat. You can’t honestly say that if Lester finishes with less than 19 wins he is worse than Wang who have 19/20 (I forget) with the yankees a few years back.

  43. jwredsox 5 years ago

    I’m just giving examples to why wins are a bad stat and shouldn’t be used to compare pitchers

  44. jwredsox 5 years ago

    No point arguing this. There are a reason teams pay pitchers based on ERA and other sabermetric stats and not wins. They are flawed and there is no way around it.

  45. IHateJoeBuck 5 years ago

    Not necessary. Too much of a difference can be bad because it gives hitters time to adjust. Usually, “experts” say it should be 10-15 mph slower than the fastball to be effective.

    Strasburg’s changeup is nasty because it looks exactly like his fastball (which is also nasty) then drops off the table, not because it’s 90 mph.

  46. 0bsessions 5 years ago

    Depends on the peripherals. Both stats are flawed as both are reliant on the guys behind you. A guy with a crap defense with low range (As in they don’t get to balls most players would, but also don’t get errors as they’re never even touching the ball” can artificially inflate a guy’s ERA. Meanwhile, a great pitcher could go out there and pitch eight innings of one run ball and lose because his team failed to score.

    These are reasons why FIP and WAR beat out ERA and Wins every day of the week. That said, even the inherintly flawed ERA is MUCH better than wins. Wins are just about the single worst indicator of pitcher quality available.

    Pitcher A is 10-7
    Pitcher B is 12-7

    Which one do you want on the mound? They both look pretty similar regarding win totals. In fact, based off of wins, Pitcher B is the better pitcher, right?

    Pitcher A is Cliff Lee
    Pitcher B is John Lackey.

    Do you still want Pitcher B on the mound for you?

  47. MaineSox 5 years ago

    I think a good way to put it would be; would you rather have Lackey (12-7) pitch for you this year or Felix Hernandez (9-10) or maybe Grenke (8-11) or Josh Johnson (11-5) or maybe some guy named Cliff Lee (10-7)?

  48. MaineSox 5 years ago

    Actually I would say that for me personally it would be a tossup between the two for this year and probably next, but if I’m building a team I take Lester; he’s younger, has better upside (CC is what he is, Lester is still a young developing pitcher who is just reaching his prime), and fair or not is in much better shape so is likely to pitch longer/older. What it comes down to for me is: if you want to talk about what they have done it’s clearly CC, if you want to talk about what they are likely to do from here forward it’s definitely Lester. CC is 30 and I would bet probably starts his down slide around 32 due to his weight and his previous workload, Lester is only 26 and big (6’4″ 240) but in great shape, and may not hit his down slide until closer to 34, that’s 8 years from now.

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