Late last night, Yankees’ GM, Brian Cashman, departed Las Vegas for San Francisco to meet with C.C. Sabathia and agent Greg Genske.
- Tyler Kepner of the New York Times is keeping the story updated here.
- Joel Sherman, of the New York Post, broke the story here.
- And I’d be remised if I neglected to mention Peter Abraham‘s on-going Yankee coverage at the Winter Meetings (which you can find here).
Now that all the background information is covered, let’s get down to business. From a fantasy perspective, I can’t see Sabathia’s value increasing or decreasing. The Yankees’ offense, on a good day, is just as good as the offense the Brewers put on the field. After the All-Star break, however, the Brewers slumped badly with a .753 team OPS. The Yankees, on the other hand, featured a .794 team OPS. Both aren’t great… but if you had to choose the lesser of two evils, it’d be the Yankees.
While Sabathia will definitely benefit the Yankees by delivering a bona fide ace to the Bronx for, arguably, the first time since Roger Clemens donned the pin-stripes, I’m not sure the same can be said for the Yankees’ impact on Sabathia.
He returns to the AL, where he struggled in the first half of 2008. While this may be due, in part to pitching for the disappointing Cleveland Indians, I don’t wholeheartedly buy into that. Let’s not forget that the American League Cy Young, Cliff Lee
, came from the same team that allegedly handicapped Sabathia. Here’s Sabathia’s numbers over the past 3 seasons facing AL East opponents. I adjusted the numbers to reflect Sabathia’s numbers against AL East teams excluding the Yankees:
2008: Home v. AL East Opponents (excluding NYY): 1-0, 1.29 ERA, 1.14 WHIP
2007: Home v. AL East Opponents (excluding NYY): 3-1, 2.78 ERA, 1.33 WHIP
2006: Home v. AL East Opponents (excluding NYY): 3-1, 2.19 ERA, 0.83 WHIP
Aside from 2008’s skewed numbers (due to the Cle-Mil trade mid-season), Sabathia has proven his worth against AL East opponents.
To me, this trade won’t improve or hinder C.C. Sabathia’s numbers. He will, barring injury, be the same stud pitcher he’s been over the past three years. However, looking at this deal from a team v. individual perspective, the Yankees have come out the winners over Sabathia’s non-monetary gains from this deal.