New York Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia met with the media Saturday morning, a day after general manager Brian Cashman announced the lefty would undergo season-ending arthroscopic knee surgery, but one that will allow him to avoid dreaded microfracture surgery.
Sabathia said he was disappointed to learn he would miss the remainder of the season. However, news that he would, for now, avoid the much more invasive microfracture procedure and the long-term uncertainty that comes with it was welcome.
“I was very concerned,” he said. “I told my wife last night, my season’s over, but it was the first time I was able to get some real sleep just kind of knowing I didn’t have to have the microfracture and that I can return next year.”
Dr. Neal ElAttrache will perform the surgery next Wednesday, but Sabathia confirmed that team physician Dr. Chris Ahmad and Texas Rangers team doctor Dr. Keith Meister both agreed with the form of treatment. He expects it will be approximately 6-8 weeks after the surgery before he can resume activity.
Sabathia said it was basically the same procedure performed on Oklahoma City Thunder star Russell Westbrook, who returned to form without any trouble. Sabathia believes he can pitch another 5-6 years, although he admitted the possibility of having to undergo future knee scopes for maintenance.
The big left-hander, who turns 34 on Monday, said he’s confident he will be back on the mound in spring training.
General manager Brian Cashman, however, cautioned Friday that there’s no guarantee Sabathia will be able to pitch effectively next season.
“He feels good about it, and I do, too,” Sabathia said. “Obviously, you’ve got to deal with a little bit of swelling here and there, but it’s something I have to do. My goal in talking to (Dr. ElAttrache) was to pitch the next five, six years and past this contract and be able to go out and do that. So I’m confident in that idea.”
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SOURCE: USA Today