10:34am: Sabathia has been diagnosed with a subluxation of his left shoulder joint, per the team. He’ll be replaced by righty Ben Heller.
6:07am: It appears that the long and storied career of Yankees lefty CC Sabathia is now at an end. He exited last night’s contest with an injury, with manager Aaron Boone saying after the game that Sabathia is likely to be replaced on the ALCS roster. Erik Boland of Newsday was among those to report the news via Twitter.
Sabathia, 39, was trying to bail his team out of an error-fueled jam when the trainer was summoned. Boone said after the game that the issue is in Sabathia’s pitching shoulder. Details are scant, but the skipper did say the outlook is “not good.”
The Yanks ended up dropping the messy game 5 contest by a score of 8-3. That puts the team in a 3-1 hole with Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole lined up to start for the Astros. Ripping off three-straight victories isn’t impossible, but will certainly be a tall order.
The front office will now need to settle on a roster replacement for Sabathia. The limitations of Giancarlo Stanton must also be considered; he’s said to be available to DH but is still dealing with a quad injury. Utilityman Tyler Wade and first baseman Luke Voit were both on the divisional series roster and remain options. Outfielder Mike Tauchman is also said to be available. It’s also possible the Yanks could instead add another arm.
As for Sabathia, he’s already committed to wrapping up his playing career at season’s end. But removing him from the roster would mean that he has now thrown his final pitches as a major leaguer. Sabathia would not be eligible to appear in the World Series — should the Yanks storm back and qualify — if he’s taken off of the ALCS roster.