MLB Baseball

4
Final 1 2 3   4 5 6   7 8 9   R H E
NY Yankees0 3 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 490
Boston0 0 0 0 2 0 1 0 0 363
3
  W: C. Sabathia (10-5)   L: C. Sale (14-5)   S: D. Betances (9)
4:10 PM PT5:10 PM MT6:10 PM CT7:10 PM ET19:10 ET23:10 GMT7:10 4:10 PM MST6:10 PM EST6:40 PM VEN3:10 UAE (+1)6:10 PM CT, August 19, 2017
Fenway Park, Boston, Massachusetts  Attendance: 37,274

Sabathia-Sale duel spices up Yankees-Red Sox clash

BOSTON -- CC Sabathia returns from his latest trip to the disabled list Saturday night.

But he almost didn't make it back to pitch for the New York Yankees against Red Sox ace Chris Sale.

Sabathia told the media before Friday night's game that he actually thought of retiring when his right knee took him out of a game in Toronto Aug. 8.

"Because it hurt," he said. "It's just not worth it."

Sabathia added, "I could go out there and I could throw four innings and hurt and pitch -- like I keep saying, I've pitched for a long time now. I'm not doing this for the money or anything like that. I'm doing this for fun and to try to win a championship and if I can't have fun and help this team win, then there's no reason for me to be out there."

But he's back -- and now he has to go against Boston's best, a night after the Yankees blew another game to their rivals.

Sabathina (9-5, 4.05 ERA) hasn't won since improving to 9-3 on July 21 and is 0-2 in his last three starts, allowing four earned runs in each and working a total of just 13 1/3 innings.

However, he has pitched twice against the Red Sox this season -- and hasn't allowed a run in 14 innings while winning both.

On July 16, at Fenway, Sabathia danced in and out of trouble but made it through six shutout innings despite a season-high five walks.

Sale got his first look at the New York part of the Red Sox-Yankees rivalry when he pitched for Boston last Sunday night in the Bronx.

He noticed the difference from the days he pitched for the Chicago White Sox.

"You can feel it," Sale told WEEI earlier this week. "People in New York have never been really nice to me, but they hate me now. I heard some pretty interesting things out in the bullpen last time warming up. ... I don't go to New York to make friends."

Sale faces the Yankees for the fourth time this season -- the third at Fenway Park.

The Red Sox planned ahead when they had Sale on target to pitch in all three series between the teams in a 23-day span -- with good reason.

He is 4-2 with a ridiculous 1.18 ERA in 13 career outings -- 10 starts -- against the Yankees. He is 0-1 with a no-decision this year against New York with a 1.19 ERA and 35 strikeouts in 22 2/3 innings.

Sale, the Cy Young front-runner who is also being mentioned in the MVP talk, enters this game 14-4 with a 2.51 ERA -- and the Red Sox have scored five runs in his four losses.

Mookie Betts is Boston's leading hitter against Sabathia, who is 15-13 with a 4.22 lifetime against Boston, 6-5 with a 4.95 at Fenway Park. Betts is 7-for-16 (.353) but Hanley Ramirez is just 2-for-16 (.125, with a homer), Xander Bogaerts 4-for-24 (.167), Jackie Bradley Jr. 6-for-25 (.192) with 11 strikeouts and Chris Young 3-for-14 (.214).

The current Yankees have some ugly numbers against Sale. Aaron Judge is 0-for-7 with six strikeouts, Brett Gardner 2-for-16 (.125) and Gary Sanchez and Ronald Torreyes both 2-for-11 (.182). Aaron Hicks is 7-for-19 (.368) and Chase Headley 7-for-23 (.304) with two homers.

Friday night's comeback win was the Red Sox's second straight over the Yankees and moved them five games ahead of New York atop the American League East.

Updated August 19, 2017

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