Sports | May 1, 2019 9:54 am

CC Sabathia Punches Ticket to Hall of Fame With 3,000th Strikeout

Sabathia is the 17th pitcher in MLB history to reach the 3K Club

CC Sabathia waves to the crowd. (Christian Petersen/Getty)
CC Sabathia waves to the crowd. (Christian Petersen/Getty)
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On Tuesday night in Arizona, New York Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia punched his ticket to Cooperstown.

The left-handed ace struck out former teammate John Ryan Murphy to record his 3,000th major league strikeout in the bottom of the second inning of New York’s 3-1 loss to the Diamondbacks at Chase Field. It makes him the 17th pitcher in MLB history, and the third southpaw, to reach the 3K Club.

Even though the milestone came on the road, the Arizona crowd was very appreciative of what Sabathia had accomplished.

The strikeout nearly guarantees that Sabathia will make the Hall of Fame as all but two of the 16 other players in the 3K club have been inducted into Cooperstown. The only two that haven’t been are Roger Clemens and Curt Schilling, both of whom haven’t been voted in for off-field issues.

“A Hall of Famer,’’ said Yankee manager Aaron Boone. “He’s a Hall of Famer. This is one of those big numbers. There’s a handful of numbers, 500 homers, 3,000 hits, 300 wins, those are the numbers since the 1800s that I think instantly quality you from a longevity standpoint. And when you follow it up on how good of a pitcher he’s been, how dominant he’s been at times in his career, how he’s been able to evolve into the kind of pitcher he is now, to me, it’s a no-brainer.’’

Nolan Ryan has the most strikeouts in MLB history with an otherworldly 5,714, almost 1,000 more than his closest competitor Randy Johnson (4,875).

Sabathia was tagged with the loss after leaving in the fifth inning, having given up two earned runs, five hits and two walks.