Just a day before the New York Yankees take on the Houston Astros in the AL Wild Card game, Yankees LHP CC Sabathia has announced he has checked himself into an alcohol rehabilitation center and will be unavailable for the postseason roster.
He released a statement through the Yankees:
“Today I am checking myself into an alcohol rehabilitation center to receive the professional care and assistance needed to treat my disease.
“I love baseball and I love my teammates like brothers, and I am also fully aware that I am leaving at a time when we should all be coming together for one last push toward the World Series. It hurts me deeply to do this now, but I owe it to myself and to my family to get myself right. I want to take control of my disease, and I want to be a better man, father and player.
“I want to thank the New York Yankees organization for their encouragement and understanding. Their support gives me great strength and has allowed me to move forward with this decision with a clear mind.
“As difficult as this decision is to share publicly, I don’t want to run and hide. But for now please respect my family’s need for privacy as we work through this challenge together.
“Being an adult means being accountable. Being a baseball player means that others look up to you. I want my kids — and others who may have become fans of mine over the years — to know that I am not too big of a man to ask for help. I want to hold my head up high, have a full heart and be the type of person again that I can be proud of. And that’s exactly what I am going to do.
“I am looking forward to being out on the field with my team next season playing the game that brings me so much happiness.”
From a baseball standpoint, this could be a big loss for the Yankees in the postseason as Sabathia is the only Yankees starter who has won a game in the last week of the season and has been great of late. In his last five starts, Sabathia has posted a record of 2-1 with a 2.17 ERA and 7.4 K/9.
As for the postseason, the Yankees will rely on Masahiro Tanaka to win them their win-or-go-home game, but beyond that Michael Pineda, Luis Severino, and most likely Adam Warren will be the starting rotation.
While the timing isn’t ideal for the Yankees, Sabathia owes it to himself to get things right and that is obviously more important in the long run.