Pitcher CC Sabathia of the New York Yankees was nervous, scared and didn’t know what to expect when he entered an alcohol-rehabilitation program in October. He started spring training in Tampa, Fla., in an upbeat mood.

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Sabathia discusses alcohol rehab

CC Sabathia was nervous, scared and didn’t know what to expect when he entered an alcohol-rehabilitation program in October.

He started spring training in an upbeat mood.

The 35-year-old left-hander took part in the New York Yankees’ first workout for pitchers and catchers Friday in Tampa, Fla. He is to throw off a mound at camp for the first time Saturday.

Sabathia revealed his problem to the team on the final weekend of the regular season during a series against Baltimore. He missed the Yankees’ loss to Houston in the American League wild-card game last fall after he entered a treatment facility.

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“Felt like I needed to get some help,” Sabathia said. “Didn’t feel good about where I was headed. I just think the breaking point for me was just waking up in Baltimore and not feeling good. I was just tired of being sick and trying to hide this thing.”

Sabathia was 6-10 with a 4.73 earned-run average last year, when he was slowed by his surgically repaired right knee. After returning from the disabled list and using a tighter brace, he went 2-1 with a 2.17 ERA in his last five starts.

“I’ve just been looking forward to getting down here with the guys and doing baseball work,” Sabathia said. “My body will definitely feel better. Not drinking alcohol will probably be huge at this point in my career.”

• Washington Nationals closer Jonathan Papelbon expressed remorse and apologized for going after teammate Bryce Harper in the dugout during a Sept. 27 game against the Philadelphia Phillies, an outburst that led to the team suspending him for the remainder of the season.

Papelbon said he patched things up with the reigning National League most valuable player.

“Me and Bryce, we’re good,” Papelbon said in his first interview since being suspended. “I was in the wrong. Should have never went down that way, and I understand that. I had a lot of time this offseason to reflect on that. I’ve had three months to think about it.”

After leaving the batter’s box slowly on a pop fly to left field in the Sept. 27 game, Harper returned to the dugout, There was a heated exchange before Papelbon, 35, started to choke Harper, 23.

• Jeff Banister’s contract to manage the Texas Rangers has been guaranteed through 2018.

Hired in October 2014, Banister was voted AL Manager of the Year after leading the Rangers to an 88-74 record and the AL West title last year. They lost to Toronto in the AL Division Series.

• Left-hander Mike Minor, 28, agreed to a $7.25 million, two-year contract with the Kansas City Royals.

• Tony Phillips, a utility player who made the final defensive play in the Oakland Athletics’ sweep of the San Francisco Giants during the earthquake-interrupted 1989 World Series, has died. He was 56.

• Jim Davenport, a longtime third baseman for San Francisco who later managed the Giants, died Thursday in Redwood City, Calif., because of heart failure. He was 82.


Vonn loses ski — and her temper

Lindsey Vonn of Vail, Colo., was incensed after losing her ski and the World Cup lead in a downhill in La Thuile, Italy, frustrated and fuming over her equipment

“My ski came off,” she said, underlining her anger with an expletive.

Lara Gut of Switzerland won and is 13 points ahead of Vonn in the overall Cup standings.

Vonn’s right ski detached on a sharp turn at about 50 mph and she slid down the course on her hip.

Looking ahead to Saturday, Vonn said, “Hopefully I’ll execute a little better and hopefully my skis will stay on.”

• Vonn said by posing in nothing but body paint in this year’s Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue she is sending a message “showing that strong, athletic women can be beautiful and it’s not just skinny models.”

• Alexis Pinturault of France protected his lead from the morning slalom in the afternoon’s downhill to win an Alpine combined race in Chamonix, France, and clinch the World Cup combined title.

• Sara Takanashi, 19, of Japan secured her third World Cup women’s ski-jumping overall title by winning an event in Lahti, Finland, for an unassailable lead.


• Siblings Maia and Alex Shibutani of the United States won the Four Continents ice-dance championship in Taiwan.

Jin Boyang of China led the men’s short program, while three-time world champion Patrick Chan of Canada was in fifth.

• Unseeded American Rajeev Ram saved five break points in the eighth game of the second set and beat German Benjamin Becker 3-6, 6-4, 6-3 in windy conditions in the Delray Beach Open tennis quarterfinals in Florida.

Ram will face fourth-seeded Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria in the semifinals.

Dimitrov beat eighth-seeded Adrian Mannarino of France 6-4, 7-5.

In other quarterfinals, Juan Martin del Potro of Argentina beat fifth-seeded Jeremy Chardy of France 6-2, 6-3 and Sam Querrey defeated Tim Smyczek 6-7 (1-7), 7-6 (7-4), 6-4 in a matchup of unseeded Americans.

• Michigan officials announced their spring football game will be at night for the first time.

The April 1 game will serve as the 15th and final practice for coach Jim Harbaugh’s second spring with the Wolverines.