CC disabled because of muscle strain

The Yankees will have to do without their staff ace for at least the next couple of weeks. CC Sabathia was placed on the 15-day disabled list Wednesday reluctantly. Sabathia, who took part in a HOPE Week celebration in a suite at Yankee Stadium before Wednesday’s game against the Indians, did not want to go on the DL but accepted the Yankees’ cautious approach.

The lefthander, who has a 9-3 record with a 3.45 ERA, has a strained left adductor muscle, which is near the groin. General manager Brian Cashman said that Sabathia likely would not have been disabled had the injury occurred in a September pennant stretch but at this point in the season “it is better to be safe than sorry.”

Sabathia soreness in the area during his past start Sunday night against the Mets at Citi Field when he failed to pitch into the seventh inning for the first time this season. He did not tell Yankees manager Joe Girardi or pitching coach Larry Rothschild of the condition because he did not consider it serious. Sabathia did a full bullpen session Tuesday and still felt discomfort, so he finally told the Yankees about it.

Sabathia’s next start was to have been Friday night at the Stadium against the White Sox, an assignment that was to go to Freddy Garcia. The righthander began the season in the rotation but was sent to the bullpen April 29 when his record was 0-2 with a 12.51 ERA. Garcia was 1-0 with a 1.80 ERA in nine relief appearances spanning 15 innings to lower his season ERA to 6.91.

But Freddy had to pitch Wednesday as Girardi was forced to go to the bullpen early after starter Andy Pettitte came out of the game in the fifth inning after being struck in the leg by a line drive. Another option for Friday night might be righthander Adam Warren, who is 5-5 with a 3.55 ERA at Triple A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.

“There is no doubt we are going to miss him,” Girardi said of Sabathia. “We have a pretty experienced club. We lost the greatest closer of all time [Mariano Rivera]. We were able to respond. We lost our setup guy [David Robertson], and we were able to respond. We were without Alex [Rodriguez] for the first couple of months a couple of years ago and were able to get through that. We just have to fight through it. Our belief is it is only going to be two starts.”

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