Yanks’ Sabathia says he ‘flipped out’ in Toronto street mess
NEW YORK (AP) — Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia says he “flipped out” and made a “bad decision” for getting involved in a shouting match outside a Toronto nightclub over the weekend.
TMZ posted video Monday showing Sabathia hollering in a crowd of people early Saturday. New York had started a series at Toronto several hours earlier.
Sabathia’s scheduled start at Yankee Stadium on Monday night against Minnesota was pushed back a day, with Bryan Mitchell pitching in his place. Manager Joe Girardi said AL East-leading New York had already planned to alter their rotation before he became aware of the incident and that it had “nothing” to do with switch.
“I just flipped out, you know. I could have handled it better,” Sabathia told reporters before Monday night’s game.
“Made a bad decision. Sometimes these things happen,” he said.
Sabathia said some hecklers got “a little bit” personal about his rugged season — the former ace is 4-9 with a 5.23 ERA — but said the taunting wasn’t racial.
Police were called to the scene in Toronto’s entertainment district. The big, 35-year-old Sabathia was pushed into a taxi by some friends and family and wasn’t detained.
Girardi said he had no comment on whether Sabathia would be disciplined by the team. Sabathia is set to start Tuesday night against the Twins.
The manager said he often reminded his players that their behavior was constantly being watched.
“You have to be more careful than you’ve ever been,” Girardi said. “Everything’s fair game. There’s no privacy.”
Girardi said the Yankees had told Mitchell on Sunday that he’d be pitching the next day, mostly as a way to give New York’s starters some extra rest. Girardi said he didn’t learn about Sabathia’s trouble until Monday.
Twins manager Paul Molitor said the Yankees told them Sunday night about the pitching switch, and he said he appreciated the advance notice.
Molitor said he didn’t know the specifics of Sabathia’s altercation, simply adding, “Sometimes things just happen.”