NEW YORK -- Since he retired as an active baseball player in 2019, former Major Leaguer CC Sabathia has kept himself busy, showing that life isn’t over after baseball.
Sabathia is currently vice president of The Players Alliance, a non-profit organization that brings needed food and baseball resources to the underserved in black communities.
There’s the sports podcast -- R2C2 -- he co-hosts with Ryan Ruocco. Sabathia is not afraid to say what’s on his mind. He is also writing an autobiography, which is coming out in July. Sabathia writes about growing up in Vallejo, Calif., to his playing days with the Indians, Brewers and Yankees.
“I have a lot going on, but it’s exciting and it’s fun. I don’t think it’s by design. This is all stuff that I really love to do,” Sabathia said via telephone. “It’s not really work. Now that I’m not playing, I have time to do those things.”
Now there is a new venture. Sabathia and apparel brand, Roots Of Fight, debuted a new clothing collection recently, honoring Sabathia by paying homage to his brilliant career on the diamond -- a career that many believe will end with enshrinement into the Hall of Fame.
The CC Sabathia collection pays tribute to various aspects of Sabathia’s life and career and is strongly influenced by his youth, his time playing with the Yankees and being a member of the famed “Black Aces" -- Black pitchers who have won at least 20 games in a season.
“We partnered with [ROF] to do the Negro League line and we were able to get friendly,” Sabathia said. “They are like a family to me and [wife] Amber. We thought it would be cool to be able to tell my story and do my line. … I’m thankful that Roots of Fight was a willing partner. We got some cool pieces out of it.”
Sabathia said he most proud of the Black Aces apparel. One can wear it during dinner time or when they are working out.
“The design of the Black Aces is really cool,” Sabathia said. “I plan on getting it as a tattoo. I’m super proud of being a black ace. I got a chance to meet [former Major Leaguer] Mudcat Grant when I was 18 years old. That was something he wanted me to accomplish – [win 20 games]. For me to accomplish that with Mudcat is super cool.”
The Sabathia Collection includes a variety of hoodies, tees and sweatpants all retailing for $48-85. The full collection is available for purchase exclusively on rootsoffight.com.
This is Sabathia’s second venture with ROF. Last year, they teamed up to launch a clothing collection paying tribute to the Negro Leagues and the African American legends who paved the way for diversity in the sport. That launch came during the Negro League’s 100th anniversary.