BALTIMORE -- Given the crowded nature of the Yankees' injured list, CC Sabathia opted to ignore the pain that began shooting through his right knee with each pitch a couple of starts ago, vowing that he would grind through until it became unmanageable.
After struggling to complete the fifth inning in Wednesday's 7-5 victory over the Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards, Sabathia decided that it was time to address the issue. The veteran left-hander said he would return to New York for treatment on Friday, a day after he was placed on the 10-day injured list due to inflammation.
"It's just something I need to take care of," Sabathia said.
Sabathia recorded his 249th career victory in the contest, permitting five runs (four earned) and six hits over five innings. He is 3-1 with a 3.48 ERA in eight starts.
"It was hurting pretty bad tonight, but I was able to get through it and kind of keep the team in the game," Sabathia said. "These guys have been playing some great defense and scoring some runs. It was good to get a win."
The 38-year-old has been dealing with a degenerative knee condition that he expects will require replacement surgery after his career ends. For now, Sabathia said that he expects a combination of rest, a cortisone injection and a lubricant known as Synvisc should permit him to return to the mound.
"He always deals with something with the knee," Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. "He’s got some inflammation in there, so it's something we’ll have to talk about."
Sabathia has had arthroscopic surgery on the knee several times, including a cleanup last October that -- combined with a December procedure to insert a stent in an artery leading to his heart -- delayed Sabathia's availability for Opening Day.
This is Sabathia's fifth stint on the injured list for right knee inflammation, having landed there in May 2014, August '15, August '17 and August '18.
The Yankees expect James Paxton to return from the injured list early next week, assuming that his three-inning simulated game goes well on Friday in Tampa, Fla.
Boone has indicated that he plans to use an opener on Friday against the Royals in Kansas City, with Chad Green and Jonathan Holder considered to be candidates to make that start. Other possibilities to bolster the staff include Chance Adams and Nestor Cortes, who were optioned to Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre within the last four days.