RHP Heller replaces injured Sabathia on Yankees ALCS roster
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The New York Yankees dropped an injured CC Sabathia from the American League Championship Series roster on Friday morning, likely ending the veteran pitcher's career.
Pitching in relief Thursday night in Game 4 of the ALCS, Sabathia "suffered a subluxation of his left shoulder joint," the team said in a statement on Friday. A subluxation is a partial dislocation, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine.
Right-handed reliever Ben Heller replaced Sabathia on the roster. On the season, the 28-year-old pitched 7 2/3 innings over six games, recording a 1.23 ERA with nine strikeouts.
The Houston Astros lead the Yankees 3-1 in the best-of-seven series. Even if the Yankees win the ALCS and Sabathia is OK to pitch, he would be ineligible for the World Series roster.
On Thursday, Sabathia was pitching in the eighth inning of the Yankees' 8-3 loss and had to consult with head athletic trainer Steve Donahue after delivering a 1-1 pitch to George Springer. He walked off the mound, tears in his eyes.
"That man gave his all," outfielder Aaron Judge told reporters. "They had to rip the ball out of his hand and that jersey off. He got everything out of that arm. That's a warrior right there. That's why he's been a leader for so many years and has so much respect throughout the game and in this stadium. It was tough to see. That's our leader. He left it all out there."
Sabathia announced in spring training that he would retire at the end of the 2019 season and has shown no signs of wavering from that decision.
The 39-year-old likely finishes his career then with a 251-161 record for the Cleveland Indians, Milwaukee Brewers and Yankees. He has a lifetime 3.74 ERA with 3,093 strikeouts in 3,577 1/3 innings.
The winner of the 2007 American League Cy Young Award, Sabathia is a six-time All-Star and was part of the 2009 Yankees team that won the World Series.