CC Sabathia on Shohei Ohtani: ‘Best baseball player I’ve ever seen’

Consider the names of the players CC Sabathia has played in the big leagues and then weigh the weight of a statement he recently made on the “R2C2 is UNINTERRUPTED” podcast.

“I keep saying this and people always laugh at me when I say this but he’s the best baseball player I’ve ever seen in my life,’’ Sabathia said to host Ryan Ruocco two-way Angels star Shohei Ohtani. “Are you kidding me? He can hit the ball 900 feet and throws 99 [mph] off the mound. Who else can do that? Nobody else is doing that at the big-league level.’’

Sabathia, who pitched 11 seasons for the Yankees and retired after last year, played with Derek Jeter, Alex Rodriguez, Mariano Rivera and Robinson Cano in The Bronx and in Cleveland with Jim Thome and Roberto Alomar. He played against Manny Ramirez, Mike Trout, Albert Pujols, Manny Machado, Miguel Cabrera, Adrian Beltre and Frank Thomas. He also played while Barry Bonds was active.

CC Sabathia and Shohei OhtaniCC Sabathia and Shohei OhtaniGetty Images (2)

That’s quite an impression Ohtani made on Sabathia since the Angels star has played in just 210 big-league games since joining the organization for the 2018 season when he was a pitcher and outfielder. In the past two seasons Ohtani has a .286 batting average, 40 homers, 123 RBIs and a .883 OPS. As a pitcher in 2018 Ohtani went 4-2 with a 3.31 ERA in 10 starts. He didn’t pitch last year due to Tommy John surgery.

Sabathia obviously puts a high emphasis on Ohtani’s ability to both hit and pitch.

“I am glad he chose Anaheim because that spring training he had (2018) because if had that in New York they would


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