C.C. Sabathia started his career at the young age of 20 years old for the Cleveland Indians all the way back in 2001. Crazy to think about, but the man has been around forever. Sabathia has always been an innings eater and it took him a little to establish himself as the dominant starter he became to be. The magic number that stands for Sabathia is 69. Very fitting.
You may be wondering why such a uniquely chosen yet beautiful number is magic to him. Believe it or not, Sabathia is only 69 strikeouts from the magic number for pitchers that is 3,000. That number 3,000 is significant for both pitchers and hitters. Hitters having their number represent the number of hits collected while pitchers involves strikeouts. Each are milestones only reached by a chosen few with pitchers being the far more exclusive club with only 16 pitchers accomplishing the feat compared to the 32 hitters have reached the 3,000 hit plateau with Albert Pujols, the latest member to join, completing his journey to 3,000 this year on May 4th, 2018.
Coming into this year, Sabathia stood at 2,846 career strikeouts. For all you math wizards out there, that made him 154 away starting out the year. Although Sabathia has faded a little towards the end of his career, that number still seemed attainable coming into the year.
Sabathia really started to make his mark on the league as 25-year-old posting a nice 3.22 ERA over 192 innings. Then the next year in 2007, he won his first and only Cy Young. What’s funny, is that in 2008, he had the best year of his career getting traded over to the Brewers at the deadline and posing a remarkable 1.65 ERA through 17 starts. Not to mention, he was also dropping bombs when his turn in the lineup came and also as a pinch hitter on a few occasions. Then he signed with the Yankees in 2009 and has been with them ever since. Sabathia is also 2nd wins for active pitchers with 243, only behind the ageless wonder Bartolo Colon.
Stay tuned tonight, August 2nd, as Sabathia takes the mound against the Boston Red Sox as he inches closer to this historic number. Other than tonight, no need to watch the Yankees play unless they’re playing the great Tampa Bay Rays.
Side Note: CC Sabathia was once picture holding a blunt outside of some hotel he was at in Atlanta, only to deny the allegations and say it was a cigar. Do all people smoke cigars like this?