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Yankees' CC Sabathia Becomes 17th MLB Pitcher with 3,000 Career Strikeouts

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistMay 1, 2019

PHOENIX, ARIZONA - APRIL 30:  Starting pitcher CC Sabathia #52 of the New York Yankees pitches against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the first inning of the MLB game at Chase Field on April 30, 2019 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

CC Sabathia etched his name in MLB history Tuesday night with his 3,000th career strikeout:

New York Yankees @Yankees

Big man, bigger #LegaCCy. https://t.co/NXQy8dHXwD

Jon Morosi @jonmorosi

CC Sabathia becomes only the third left-handed pitcher in @MLB history with 3,000 strikeouts. Huge congratulations to one of the most respected people in the sport, who has used his platform to help countless people -- inside and outside the game -- for so many years. @MLBNetwork

The New York Yankees star entered the game against the Arizona Diamondbacks with 2,997 career strikeouts and didn't need long to reach the milestone. He struck out three batters in the second inning, with the third coming against catcher John Ryan Murphy to put himself in the record books.

It was an emotional moment for the pitcher, who was joined by the members of his team on the field:

YES Network @YESNetwork

STRIKEOUT #️⃣3,000!!! Congratulations, CC Sabathia! #YANKSonYES https://t.co/mFNNNmYsfk

Bob Nightengale @BNightengale

The entire #Yankees team came out of dugout to congratulate CC https://t.co/LUAlUZQhZp

Sabathia becomes only the 17th player in MLB history to reach 3,000 strikeouts for a career, although he is in even rarer territory as the third lefty:

ESPN Stats & Info @ESPNStatsInfo

CC Sabathia has become just the 3rd left-handed pitcher in MLB history to reach 3,000 career strikeouts. He is the 17th pitcher overall to reach the plateau. https://t.co/iLcHwFiheD

Nolan Ryan leads all pitchers with 5,714 strikeouts, a mark no one will reach anytime soon, while Randy Johnson, Roger Clemens and Steve Carlton represent the only other members of the 4,000-K club.

Even if Sabathia doesn't climb up the list, he has still put together an incredible career that also includes 247 career victories entering Tuesday. With six All-Star selections, a Cy Young award and a World Series title also on his resume, this will likely add up to a Hall of Fame career.

The performance is even more impressive in an era that hasn't featured too many pitchers putting up these types of numbers. John Smoltz was the last player to reach the 3,000 mark in 2008.

Justin Verlander ranks second among active players with 2,759 career strikeouts, while Max Scherzer (2,503) also has a shot at matching Sabathia.

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