New York Yankees starting pitcher CC Sabathia joined an elite group on Tuesday night by tallying his 3000th career strikeout.
Sabathia recorded his 3000th strikeout against John Ryan Murphy of the Arizona Diamondbacks in the second inning. The 38-year-old becomes just the 17th player in MLB history to achieve the feat.
— YES Network (@YESNetwork) May 1, 2019
Although he spent the first eight seasons of his career with the Cleveland Indians (and a short rental-stint with the Milwaukee Brewers), Sabathia has played the majority of his career in pinstripes.
In 11 seasons with the Yankees, Sabathia has racked up 1607 strikeouts and a 3.73 ERA. In his first season with the Yankees, 2009, Sabathia was a power pitcher who relied on his elite stuff. He led the Bronx Bombers to a World Series title that year.
As time went on, Sabathia lost some of his stuff and it looked like his career would end long before he reached 3000 strikeouts. However, the lefty hurler reinvented himself by developing a nasty cutter.
Although once seen primarily as a power pitcher, Sabathia is now comfortable in his role as the crafty veteran. Entering Tuesday’s game, Sabathia posted an ERA of 2.40 in his first three starts. He only went five innings in each start, but that’s all the Yankees need from him on most nights.
Of course, this is Sabathia’s last season so he will fall well short of the 300-win mark. When the time comes, Sabathia will have a compelling case for the Hall of Fame.
He’s not exactly a shoo-in, but his latest milestone should help his cause. Only Roger Clemens and Curt Schilling have
Perhaps bookending his Yankees career with a World Series title would be the perfect cherry on top to a fantastic career.