New York Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia has checked into an alcohol rehab facility and will miss the entire postseason. Sabathia addressed his decision in a written statement, which was reported by multiple sources including Mike Axisa of CBS Sports.
Sabathia’s statement read as follows:
“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.”
Sabathia, 35, struggled for the Yankees this season in going 6-10 with a 4.73 ERA and 137 strikeouts, plus a 1.42 WHIP. He has dealt with knee arthritis over the past three years, which has affected his productivity. In 15 seasons, Sabathia is 214-129 with a 3.69 ERA and has made six All-Star teams while winning the American League Cy Young Award with the Cleveland Indians in 2007. In 2009, he won a World Series with the Yankees.
Just what happens next for him career-wise remains to be seen. It’s great that Sabathia is focused on getting better so he can focus more on baseball and being a better person in general, but has two years and $50 million remaining on his contract and is pitching on a knee that, as he put it, will eventually need to be replaced. Given his struggles and long-term health, is it really worth it to continue?
Either way, that isn’t the point. The point is that Sabathia is taking a big step forward in admitting that he has a problem, and his being able to continue moving in that direction as a result will ease a tremendous burden off of his shoulders.
Campus Sports will update Sabathia’s story accordingly as any new information on his recovery becomes available.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports