Yankees Joba Chamberlain could be facing Tommy John surgery
What started out as a 15 Day DL stint for Joba Chamberlain with a strained flexor muscle in his right arm, which also included soreness near the inside of the right elbow, that has gone through 4 years of “Joba Rules” has turned itself into a torn ligament, a possible trip to Alabama to see Dr. James Andrews, and season ending Tommy John surgery.
Joba Chamberlain who in 2007, joined the Yankees with a rock star persona and 100 MPH fastball, was hurt by the Yankees “Joba Rules” and the Yankees constant indecision on which would be his role found himself at an impasse of his very young career. After his disappointing 2010 season, Yankees brass decided that Joba would be a full time reliever and this decision seemed to have given the promising Chamberlain’s career a fresh start. With injuries this year to Pedro Feliciano and Rafael Soriano, Joba’s role was increasing and with each outing the rock star of 2007, was reappearing. After a 35 pitch 1.2 inning outing on Sunday against the Anaheim Angels, Joba expressed discomfort in his right arm and after further tests, Joe Girardi revealed the torn ligament in his arm. If Joba, is in fact done for the season with Tommy John surgery, the Yankees bullpen and starters will feel even more pressure than they have in the past few weeks, not only because of the offense or lack there of, and now the dwindling bullpen arms. One thing the Yankees must begin to be concerned about is will Mariano Rivera continue to defy Father Time or will he succumb to his powers. If Rivera cannot hold down the 9th inning the way he has since 1997, expect the Yankees to fall out of the playoff race in mid July.
Joba Rules, has more to do with Joe Torre’s bullpen management of the mid 2000’s more than anything else. In the next few days, there will be a ton of articles written trying to blame this injury to Joba on the Joba Rules, but the rules have nothing to do with the rules that were put in place to for Joba, a 1st round selection in the 2006 MLB draft, to have a long and productive Major League career. Pitchers who come back from Tommy John surgery successfully usually come back throwing harder than they were before, in Joba’s case he could be throwing upwards of 103-105…..Just a thought Yankees fan.