CC tunes up for Opening Day against Minor Leaguers

CC tunes up for Opening Day against Minor Leaguers

TAMPA, Fla. -- CC Sabathia threw 92 pitches in a tuneup for his Opening Day start on Wednesday, taking on a lineup of Yankees Minor League hitters at the club's Himes Avenue training complex.

"I did everything I wanted to do; I got the pitch count up. It was good," Sabathia said. "It was a little better today. I was keeping the ball into righties much better, [and] that was the biggest thing. We worked on that today."

Sabathia threw to catcher Francisco Cervelli against the Yankees' Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre lineup, pitching with the Double-A Trenton defense behind him. Sabathia worked six innings, scattering a run on eight hits with a walk and a strikeout. He threw 65 pitches for strikes.

As Sabathia did earlier in the spring when he passed on a chance to face the Blue Jays, the southpaw said he preferred facing batters in pinstripes to staying at George M. Steinbrenner Field to see the Red Sox in a Grapefruit League game.

"I would much rather not have them see my stuff right now if they didn't have to," said Sabathia, who will face Boston on April 1 at Yankee Stadium. "Pitching in a Minor League game was the best way for me to get to 90 pitches.

"That's a long start for me, so I thought the best way to do that was in the Minors. I'll probably take it down a little bit and I'll be ready for Opening Day."

Bryan Hoch is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch and read his MLBlog, Bombers Beat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.