Yankees left-hander C.C. Sabathia’s right knee was in so much pain during an unsuccessful Aug. 8 start against the Blue Jays that the 37-year-old feared he wouldn’t take the ball again, Ken Davidoff of the New York Post reports. “I know that he was pretty emotional that night, because I think he thought he was probably headed for surgery,” manager Joe Girardi said. A clean MRI and a painkilling injection enabled Sabathia to avoid surgery, though, and he returned from the 10-day disabled list Saturday to throw six innings of two-earned run ball in an upset win over Chris Sale and the Red Sox. Sabathia is due to become a free agent in the offseason, when he’ll have to decide whether to pursue another deal or call it a career. His performance this year would certainly warrant a contract – the former ace has ridden a 50 percent ground-ball rate to a 3.99 ERA over 108 1/3 innings.
More from the East Coast:
- Home run-hitting machine Giancarlo Stanton is among the game’s absolute best players at the moment, but the Marlins right fielder’s contract and injury history combine to make him a very tough sell around the majors, Joel Sherman of the New York Post writes. Stanton, who’s due $295MM from 2018-28 and has both full no-trade rights and a 2020 opt-out clause, went through revocable trade waivers unclaimed earlier this month. The executives Sherman spoke with aren’t surprised. “This is the problem if you make emotional decisions in the moment. Stanton is playing great now, but three months ago you would have thought he was at least a $100 million liability and three months from now you might feel the same,” one exec said of Stanton, who will create a dilemma for the Marlins’ new ownership group when it takes the reins. On one hand, Stanton’s contract is the biggest contributor to the franchise’s financial woes – the Marlins will lose $70MM-plus this year, per Sherman – so trading him would benefit Derek Jeter & Co. from a payroll standpoint. On the other, Stanton’s contract means Miami likely wouldn’t get the type of return for him that you’d expect for someone of his immense ability and star power. That means trading the 27-year-old would probably send the wrong message to a fan base that outgoing owner Jeffrey Loria has alienated over the years.
- Yankees vice president of player development Gary Denbo is an early front-runner to become the Marlins’ general manager once the Jeter group assumes control of the franchise, according to Mark Feinsand of MLB.com (Twitter links). Denbo has worked in various capacities with the Yankees since the 1990s, the decade in which Jeter’s professional career began, and was a mentor to the the now-retired shortstop during his Hall of Fame-caliber playing days. The two remain “close,” Feinsand notes.
- Injuries have ravaged the Nationals’ outfield throughout the season, but here’s some positive news for the first-place club: Left fielder Jayson Werth is “feeling good” and set to begin a rehab assignment with Triple-A Syracuse on Monday, tweets FanRag’s Jon Heyman. Werth has had a tough road back since he landed on the disabled list June 5 with a fractured left foot and a bone bruise. The 38-year-old free agent-to-be was in the midst of a nice season prior to the injury, as he slashed .262/.367/.446 with eight home runs over 196 plate appearances.