Sabathia expects to pitch next year

NEW YORK -- CC Sabathia revealed Tuesday that he had a bone spur removed from his right knee when he had season-ending surgery on his right knee last Thursday. But the 34-year-old left-hander also said that a more serious microfracture surgery has been ruled out, and expressed confidence that he'll be healthy enough to pitch for the New York Yankees next season.

Sabathia started just eight games for the Yankees this season, and the results weren't good. He went on the disabled list in mid-May with a 3-4 record and 5.28 ERA, and was shut down after two minor-league rehabilitation starts last month.

Doctors told Sabathia he has almost no cartilage under his kneecap, and that his knee will require constant maintenance, including PRP shots and procedures to drain fluid when there is swelling. Sabathia said he will also get a stem-cell injection later this month.

"I'll have time for it to work this time, instead of trying to rush back," said Sabathia, who had the stem-cell treatment earlier this year. "I have five months. Hopefully I'm be able to have a normal offseason."

Sabathia won't try to throw standing up until a couple of weeks after the stem-cell injection, so it will be a while before he can say for sure whether the knee will hold up. But he's already encouraged.

"If it's like this, I can deal with it," he said. "I don't think there's any reason I shouldn't be able to tolerate it and pitch."

Sabathia said doctors told him the bone spur was near his ACL, but that the ligament itself was fine. Still, the feeling was that the spur contributed to the discomfort Sabathia was feeling in his knee, and he said he already feels better.