The 38-year-old Sabathia, who will return for his 11th season with the Yankees, has turned into a reliable five-inning pitcher, flawless for the back end of a rotation NY is hoping to fill via free agency or trade.
"We need to reinforce our pitching, so we'll do the best we can with that", Cashman said, according to MLB.com's Bryan Hoch. "That seems to be a yearly effort".
The Yankees were reportedly considering dealing Gray to a small market team around the trade deadline last season. "Obviously nothing to speak for that as of yet but he's been a great Yankees and he has some time on the clock still". It's rare that it derails deals, but we've seen it happen before. Trust me. I think he's a heck of a pitcher.
In 29 starts last season, Sabathia threw 153 innings of 3.65 ERA baseball.
He is 129-80 for the Yankees, and his new deal boosts his pay from NY to $229 million over 11 seasons.
Free agency isn't the only avenue NY could look to when it comes to pitching.
It was reported earlier in the week that the Yankees were interested in trading for former Cy Young victor Corey Kluber. "I'd be saying goodbye to people probably, more so than not".
Cashman never mentioned specific players the Yankees could target, however. As the season progressed, he said he was still making up his mind.
Given that GM Brian Cashman has not been bashful about the likelihood of trading Sonny Gray, this shouldn't be considred too much of a surprise. His struggles last season - 11-9, 4.90 ERA - led him to be bumped from the rotation and left off the playoff roster. The Yankees' projected rotation for 2019 also includes right-handers Luis Severino and Masahiro Tanaka, and Cashman says he intends to add several pitchers after the team went 100-62 only to finish second in the AL East and lose in the Division Series to Boston, the eventual World Series champion. His new deal boosts his pay from NY to $229 million. "It's not working. I'm not going to be willing to continue to walk through the fire and expect it to be a different result".