Sabathia: Yankees "Looking At A Championship In 2020"

After signing Gerrit Cole, the Yankees could win their first World Series since 2009

Tiki and Tierney
December 11, 2019 - 5:14 pm
Gerrit Cole Astros

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When C.C. Sabathia signed with the New York Yankees in December 2008, he was immediately thrust under the microscope. And who could blame him? After all, he had spent the first eight seasons of his career in Cleveland before a pit stop in Milwaukee. 

Those are small-market teams. The Yankees, of course, are not.

“I just remember the first morning I woke up after I agreed to the deal, and it was all over the place – it was the biggest news,” Sabathia said on Tiki & Tierney. “I wasn’t used to that.”

Gerrit Cole might be feeling the same thing after signing a record nine-year, $324 million deal with the Yankees.

“It’s a huge deal,” Sabathia said. “Today, he’s probably thinking like, ‘Man, what did I get myself into?’ When you sign with the Yankees, especially with that amount of money, it’s going to be a huge story. You just got to get adjusted, get ready to deal with this media.”

Cole, 29, figures to be just fine on the mound. He won his final 16 regular-season decisions with Houston last year and led the AL with a 2.50 ERA. His career-high 326 strikeouts were the most in the majors.

“I think once he gets here, he’ll be fine,” Sabathia said. “The locker room is good, the clubhouse is great, the team is good, the organization is great. Having the big expectations of the big contract, it’s a little nerve-wracking until you actually get here and see, ‘Oh, I’ve got Aaron Judge behind me. I’ve got Gleyber Torres. I got some help to help me try to get to this championship.’ That’s the ultimate goal every year.”

The Yankees have won 100+ games two years in a row and have reached the ACLS in two of the last three. But they haven’t won, or even reached, a World Series since 2009 – Sabathia’s first season with the team.

“This 2019 Yankees team is basically a finished product,” he said. “They’re just missing an ace. If he comes in, does his thing and the rest of these guys stay healthy, we’re looking at a championship in 2020 for the Yankees.”