Spring Training Game Thread: Sabathia’s Debut



Sixteen days from now, CC Sabathia will be on the mound for Opening Day. Today he will make his first Spring Training start after a series of simulated games designed to keep AL East rivals from seeing him before the season. Sabathia got his pitch count up to around 40 pitches last time out, so he’ll probably go 60 pitches or so this afternoon. Given his offseason elbow surgery, this game is a pretty important step. Here’s the starting nine…

  1. CF Brett Gardner
  2. SS Derek Jeter
  3. LF Ichiro Suzuki
  4. DH Travis Hafner
  5. RF Juan Rivera
  6. C Frankie Cervelli
  7. 3B Ronnie Mustelier
  8. 1B Dan Johnson
  9. 2B Corban Joseph

And on the mound is the left-hander from Vallejo, CC Sabathia. Here are the day’s second stringers, courtesy of Chad Jennings.

Available Pitchers: RHP David Robertson, RHP Joba Chamberlain,LHP Vidal Nuno, and RHP Mark Montgomery are all scheduled to come out of the bullpen.

Available Position Players: C Francisco Arcia, 2B Gil Velazquez, SS Addison Maruszak, 3B Jose Pirela, LF Matt Diaz, CF Melky Mesa, RF Thomas Neal, and DH Bobby Wilson will come off the bench. Johnson will play the entire game, apparently.

The game is scheduled to start a little after 1pm ET and can be seen on YES and (no local blackout). Enjoy.


  1. Eddard says:

    I’m sure the division rival Blue Jays will be shocked at what CC has to throw at them. It’s not as if he’s pitched against them the last 4 years. Good move by the Yankees to keep the big man a secret.

    • jjyank says:

      I’m sure the Yankees are the only team to ever do this.


      Who cares?

      • Eddard says:

        I wonder when they’re going to retire Paulie’s number. He certainly deserves it. I’ll never forget the Paul O’Neill chants in the 2001 WS. Great Yankee, great man.

        • Barry's Gift Basket says:

          If anything, they should un-retire some numbers.

          • Pat D says:

            Which ones would you unretire, out of curiosity?

            • Barry's Gift Basket says:

              9, 23, 32, 44, 49, probably 10 too.

              • RetroRob (Live from Amsterdam) says:

                I’ll keep Donnie Baseball. Add #1 to that list of unretired. Martin was a great manager at times, could have been a HOF manager if he could get his act together. He could not.

                Rivera and Jeter should have their numbers retired. No one else from the recent great teams, from Bernie to Jorge to Andy, and certainly not Paulie, should have their number retired. Give them a day, give them a plaque, create a Yankee HOF where they can be inducted. The retirement of numbers, however, should be of only the highest order.

                • Pat D says:

                  Really not trying to start an argument, but I think both Pettitte and Bernie are more deserving of having their numbers retired than Mattingly.

                  • RetroRob (Live from Amsterdam) says:

                    No worries. I wouldn’t argue that strongly, if at all.

                    I think that any player whose number is retired should be a HOFer, but I don’t think every HOFer should necessarily have his number retired. Joe Gordon is now in the HOF. I don’t think the Yankees should even vaguely consider retiring his number (whatever it was.) So the standard to have a number retired goes beyond being a HOFer, and that’s how Don Mattingly is just about the only player I can think of who will break my own rule.

                    You can take the stars of Pettitte, Posada and Bernie and add them all together, and they do not burn as bright as Mattingly’s star in the view of a very large segment of the Yankee universe fanbase. Retirement of a number is about greatness and a certain level of “specialness” that few achieve. For a period, he was considered the best hitter in the game, a HOF-caliber player. For all of Andy’s meaning, he has never been the best, and he does not have the level of fan support and meaning as Mattingly.

                    That’s why I can see an exception for Mattingly, yet I won’t argue that strongly, but I can make a case.

                • jjyank says:

                  I’m not sure if I agree about the specific players, but I agree with your premise. Getting your number retired should be reserved for the guys who spend like, 10+ years with the team and are icons.

                  On the players…maybe I’m biased because these are the guys that I grew up with. But Bernie, Posada, and Andy (in addition to Rivera and Jeter, obviously) gave the Yankees their entire career (sans a couple of season with Houston for Andy) and they’re all close enough to HOF caliber that they’ll be on the ballot. Add in the 5 WS rings, and I would do it. I know the team can’t keep retiring numbers or they’ll run out, but I would feel really, really sad to see another 51, 46, or 20 running around out there.

                  And absolutely not for O’Neil. Love the guy, but he wasn’t with the team long enough.

                  • jjyank says:

                    Well, 4 rings for Bernie, but still. Dynasties don’t come around very often, and the key players of that dynasty should be remembered.

                    • Barry's Gift Basket says:

                      I hear you, believe me. From what I’ve read we are about the same age (24), so I grew up watching those guys too, but it has to stop, retire 2 and 42 and be done with it.

                      About being sad of watching the numbers on other player’s backs, I think it depends on wich player you hand the… lets call it respected number. I think it could be pretty cool if a couple of years down the road Mason Williams is wearing 20, Gary Sanchez 51 and stuff like that, maybe David Price wearing 46 idk.

                    • jjyank says:

                      True, it depends on the player. Montero wore 21 in the minors, I was certain (before the trade, obviously) that he would be given 21 in the majors as well. And that would have been great.

                      Maybe the Yankees should do something like this: Retire the numbers of the all time greats. The Jeters, the Riveras. And do a semi-retirement of the borderline guys. By semi-retirement, I mean don’t retire them officially, but keep them out of service until a hot shot prospect comes along. I still have a worn, slightly ripped and tattered Bernie Williams poster in my closet. The only person I would be okay with wearing his 51 would be a top 5 Yankee prospect. I’d love to see Mason Williams take 51. Same number, same last name, same position. Poetic.

              • Manny's BanWagon says:

                No way on 44 and 49.

                Pettitte has had longevity but wasn’t close to being as good as Guidry was in his prime.

                As for 44, Reggie is in the HOF as a Yankee so I think he deserve it too.

            • Barry's Gift Basket says:

              Actually the only thing I respect about the redsox is their policy(?) to retire numbers.

              • Pat D says:

                Except they’ve violated their own policy at least twice.

                • Barry's Gift Basket says:

                  Yeah, that’s why I used the question mark. I just think that’s a good start point to determine wich numbers get retired. Ten years with the team and to be a HOFer.

  2. trr says:

    seems like Musty (we need a better nick name!)is getting a good look at 3rd. I’m hoping if he can show enough defensively, he’ll get some
    time there in April; I like his bat!

  3. Mscott says:

    How about: Ronnier “I Bought A Vowel!” Mustelier?

  4. dkidd says:

    sterling’s home run call for mustelier?

    the mind reels…

  5. Barry's Gift Basket says:

    Wow, it looks like Musty at least has the arm.

  6. jjyank says:

    That wasn’t the hardest play, to be sure, but nice nonetheless, Mustelier.


    Fat dude like CC will get rocked today.. U don’t even have to look at the score today to know that.. Hes gonna get drilled one yr soon, becasue hes such a fat slob..

  8. Eddard says:

    And that’s what Frankie brings- Energy. They won’t do a 50/50 split at C, once Frankie gets rolling he’ll catch 80% of the games.

  9. jjyank says:

    Cervilli! Making his case for the starting job.

    • Barry's Gift Basket says:

      I wouldn’t be surprised if they start the season playing near to 50% of the time each of them, then the one who is… playing better will start to gain some more ground.

      • jjyank says:

        Sounds about right.

      • RetroRob (Live from Amsterdam) says:

        Yup. I noted before, the “loser” might still start 40% of the games at the start, unless one of them just goes crazy, and the only one capable of that would be Cervelli. He does have some hitting skills, unlike Stewart.

    • Mike HC says:

      I’m starting to believe in Cervelli but can’t help think I’m being a fool for putting too much stock into spring training.

      • jjyank says:

        I feel ya dude, I’m there as well. Very slowly, I am starting to think “hey, just maybe the catching situation won’t be as bad as we’ve been fearing”. But yeah, at the same time, the other side of my brain says “dude, it’s spring training”.

        We’ll see. I would say that I am cautiously….very cautiously…optimistic. Relatively speaking.

  10. Eddard says:

    As I said yesterday, Hafner is going to crush in YS. Great signing.

  11. teddy says:

    that was a bomb

  12. jjyank says:

    Yeaaaaah Pronk!

  13. teddy says:

    great more injuries

  14. jjyank says:

    Jeez. Hope Musty isn’t hurt too bad, our options are limited enough as it is.

  15. Havok9120 says:

    Well that’s…unfortunate.

  16. Barry's Gift Basket says:

    Oh Joba that’s a 20 mustache tool.

  17. frank says:

    CC looked like shit. 86-89 with the fastball. That’s not big league velocity.

    But it’s only his first spring start! It’s no big deal!!! It’s a big deal when you’ve logged as many innings as CC has and you had a surgical procedure on your elbow in the offseason. This team is fucking cooked. You’re lost if you think otherwise.

  18. dalelama says:

    This line-up really stinks.

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