From The Box Score- Tampa Bay Rays vs New York Yankees- 7/16/19

I could talk about Aaron Judge hitting a clutch two run homer in the 8th, for a Yankees lead. Or a booming, majestic grand slam by Didi, to break it open. I could mention the improbable David Hale firing a sinker to induce a game saving double play with the bases juiced. Those were all key factors in the Yankees 8 to 3 win, Wednesday in the Bronx. What I want to talk about, is the thing that occurred that can’t be measured with a stat. No fantasy teams will draft for. And is something scouts overlook at times. Will and heart, and overall inspiration for your team.

That’s what CC Sabathia provided for the Yankees last night. After striking out Avasil Garcia in the 6th, the two, who have a history, started barking at each other. Up to that point, the Yankees offense was flat, amidst their 6 game hitting slide. The big fella had given up 3 runs, but was overall sharp and kept them in the game. At one point Didi hilariously tried to hold CC back. The benches cleared somewhat, but nothing too extra happened. I believe CC was trying to fire his stagnant teammates up. With the thought of last season lingering in his mind as well. Remember when he sacrificed 500 K after he hit Garcia? The Yankees gave it to him anyway. They appreciated his leadership and relentless loyalty. 

It’s inspiring to see a player in his last season, compete and show fire as he did. That is something that is overlooked in today’s analytical game. What’s in your head and in your heart still matters. Did CC force the Rays to throw sexy pitches over the plate? No. But somewhere along the line, I like to think his antics inspired the win.

Maybe I’m sentimental, I just think you have to cover all angles when evaluating players. Not just what a spreadsheet tells you. I’ll miss ya big man. Hopefully, he rides off into the sunset with a WS win.

Corey Reighn