So much for Sabathia being a postseason choke

Remember all the talk before the playoffs started about how CC Sabathia couldn’t hack it in the postseason? Well, apparently Sabathia took it to heart because so far the Yankees’ ace has been dominant.

Sabathia limited the Angels to one run on four hits over eight innings in the Yankees’ 4-1 Game 1 victory in the ALCS Friday night. Sabathia also struck out seven and walked just one as he threw 76 of his 113 pitches for strikes.

Of course, New York was helped dramatically by L.A.’s inability to make routine plays. The Halos played a brutal game, committing three errors and allowing a routine popup fall between Eric Aybar and Chone Figgins between shortstop and third base in the third inning. The play allowed two runners to score and the Yankees never looked back after that.

The only good thing that can come out of this loss for the Angels is that they played so bad that it could re-focus them for the rest of the series. It’s hard to get over a tough loss when you played well and just didn’t execute in the end. It’s a little easier to chalk up a loss and move on when you make a bunch of routine errors and overall just had an off night.

We’ll see how the Halos respond in Game 2.

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Yankees to use three-man rotation in ALCS?

According to a report by The Journal News, Yankees manager Joe Girardi is considering using a three-man pitching rotation against the Angels in the ALCS.

Girardi pointed to the lighter workload that CC Sabathia faced in September, as well as the longer layoff he’s getting now since the Yankees swept the first round. Girardi said that the team would like to have plan in place for the rotation going into the series, as opposed to just waiting to see where the team stands when Game 4 rolls around. Remember, too, that because of off-days Sabathia could pitch Games 1, 4 and 7 and only have to pitch on short rest once instead of twice.

It’s not a bad strategy, although if the Yankees and Angels push it to a Game 7 that means Sabathia won’t start Game 1 of the World Series if New York wins. That said, it’s Girardi’s mission to get the Yankees to the World Series and then worry about how to game plan for the Fall Classic when the time comes. So if he feels as though a three-man rotation is the best strategy against the Halos, then he should go with it.

If the Yankees are forced to use a fourth pitcher, than it will likely be Chad Gaudin and not Joba Chamberlain, who will remain in the bullpen.

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