The Angels have spoken to free agent hurler C.C. Sabathia, George A. King III of the New York Post reports (Twitter link). The Halos made one big rotation addition earlier this week by landing Shohei Ohtani, but Sabathia would bring more veteran stability to a pitching staff that is full of question marks after two injury-ravaged seasons.
Of course, Sabathia himself comes with significant health questions, as it wasn’t long ago that it seemed as if the southpaw’s persistent right knee problems were threatening to end his career. Despite this lingering injury and other DL stints for hamstring and groin issues over the last two years, Sabathia enjoyed a late-career resurgence as a productive innings-eater at the back of the Yankees’ rotation. Sabathia posted a 3.81 ERA, 7.5 K/9 and 2.37 K/BB rate over 328 1/3 innings in 2016-17, accumulating 4.5 fWAR over that stretch.
The Yankees were also recently in touch with Sabathia, who has previously stated that he would prefer to remain in the Bronx. That desire probably only grew stronger in the wake of the Yankees’ acquisition of Giancarlo Stanton, though with the team now boasting an outfielder surplus to go with their wealth of prospects, New York has the means to acquire a starter with more long-term potential than Sabathia if it chooses.
If Sabathia did choose to return to his home state of California, he’d join an Angels rotation that includes Ohtani, Garrett Richards, Matt Shoemaker, Tyler Skaggs and a wealth of other candidates like Andrew Heaney, J.C. Ramirez, Nick Tropeano, or Parker Bridwell. Any of the latter group of arms could be Triple-A starting depth or moved to the bullpen to fill the Angels’ need for multi-inning relief options.