Home woes continue for CC
Yanks lefty drops sixth straight Bronx start
NEW YORK -- CC Sabathia's first two innings Saturday afternoon showed little indication of the barrage that was to come, but perhaps it should not have been a surprise, considering that home cooking has not seemed to agree with the big Yankees left-hander of late.
Seeking his third straight victory, Sabathia instead was sent to the showers in the third inning, absorbing his shortest non-injury start in pinstripes. He was charged with six runs and seven hits, lasting just 2 1/3 innings before manager Joe Girardi called to the bullpen.
"It's frustrating, especially when we haven't been playing well," Sabathia said after the Yankees' 15-4 loss. "You kind of want to put an end to that and be a guy to try to help us. I couldn't do that today."
Sabathia said the Rangers "played pepper" with his fastball, and as a result, has now lost each of his past six starts at Yankee Stadium (since April 11 of last season), going 0-6 with a 9.42 ERA in those starts. His last victory in the Bronx came on Sept. 20, 2013.
"It's hard to put your finger on it," Girardi said. "When you think about Yankee Stadium, you think it favors left-handers over right-handers, so it's really hard to put your finger on it. I don't really think there's anything to it, it's just, it's happened. He had a tough start today and he needs to bounce back."
After striking out four in the first two frames, Sabathia lost No. 9 hitter Jake Smolinski to a walk and shortstop Didi Gregorius knocked down a Delino DeShields infield single, but couldn't make a play.
Sabathia then couldn't get the big out he needed to bail out his defense, allowing a run-scoring hit to Shin-Soo Choo that sparked Texas' 10-run frame. Carlos Beltran then misplayed Prince Fielder's run-scoring single in right field, allowing a second run to score.
"You don't want to make errors like that," Beltran said. "You want to get to the ball and keep it in front of you and when it turns into runs, that's a bad thing."
Adrian Beltre knocked a hit before Sabathia finally recorded an out. It was the only one he'd get; Elvis Andrus followed with a two-run single and Girardi extended his right hand to summon long reliever Esmil Rogers.
"I didn't know how many pitches I had or anything," said Sabathia, who tossed just 59 pitches (39 strikes). "Joe is trying to stop the bleeding."
It was Sabathia's shortest start since June 21, 2009, at Miami, when he left after 1 1/3 innings with left biceps tendinitis, and his shortest non-injury start since June 21, 2006, for the Indians at Wrigley Field.
"Just to have the ball up is frustrating," Sabathia said. "It's something that I need to correct, get the two-seamers down and get a ground ball to get a double play and get out of that inning."