Analysis

Making CC Sabathia’s Case For Cooperstown

It has been a topic that has been brought into question lately, but there is no doubt that when it is all said and done CC Sabathia deserves a spot in Cooperstown. 

Joining the very prestigious Hall of Fame is an honor. An honor that isn’t always bestowed upon all worthy candidates. However, Carsten Charles Sabathia indeed has a Case for Cooperstown. So let us examine and drill down to the bedrock of what should make CC Sabathia Hall of Famer.

Career Stats (As of 4/29, Fangraphs and Baseball Reference)

Games Started: 514

Innings Pitched: 3343.1

Wins/Losses: 239/146 (.621 Winning %)

ERA: 3.69

FIP: 3.70

Strikeouts: 2862

Total WAR: 65.7

These numbers are awe-inspiring as CC has had a long and successful career. Sabathia made his Major League debut for the Cleveland Indians on April 8th, 2001 against the Baltimore Orioles. CC is in his 18th season at the Major League level. Sabathia is in the top 100 in MLB history regarding innings pitched.

CC is currently 17th All-Time in Strikeouts and third most all-time by a left-handed pitcher behind only Randy Johnson and Steve Carlton. CC Sabathia would rank higher than sixty-three current Hall of Famers in terms of strikeouts.

Regarding pitcher Wins, CC Sabathia is currently 54th all time and as far as current Hall of Fame starters go CC would be tied with Mordecai “Three Finger” Brown for 44th place. The only pitchers to have more wins than CC has right now that are not in the Hall of Fame are Bartolo Colon (still active), Jack Powell, Andy Pettitte (2019 ballot), Jaime Moyer (currently on ballot), Gus Weyhing, Jim McCormick, Jim Katt, Mike Mussina (currently on ballot), Tommy Mullane, Tommy John, Bobby Matthews and Roger Clemens (currently on ballot).

Sabathia has also been the best pitcher in his league, which is something that Hall of Fame voters look for, by way of winning the 2007 AL Cy Young award. CC also contributed mightily helping the New York Yankees win the 2009 World Series claiming the ALCS MVP award that year. CC has been known as a winner and a competitor in every stop he’s made. Many people questioned Sabathia choosing to pitch on short rest for the Milwaukee Brewers in the stretch run of 2008 due to his impending free agency. For if Sabathia got hurt in doing so would have cost himself millions upon millions of dollars in that offseason.

CC is a workhorse, and a fiery competitor just look at his most recent start against the LA Angels of Anaheim. On the ESPN telecast, CC pitched his best game so far in this young season going seven strong innings scattering five hits and striking out four while walking only one batter. CC was inducing weak contact all game long, a strategy that CC has been employing over the last several years.

After Sabathia lost his overpowering fastball, CC struggled for a few seasons. Until CC decided to introduce the cutter into his repertoire. The cutter was a pitched that helped and saved Andy Pettite’s career. And thus far the very same pitch has resurrected what at one point was thought to be the end of Sabathia’s storied career.

Carsten Charles Sabathia has had a wonderful career that should be punctuated by an induction into the most exclusive and legitimate club in all of the sports world the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

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