Here we go again. This debate never seems to end. I was one of those people that was unsure, until last season. The Joba Chamberlain wants to start" target="_blank">New York Post has a story in today's paper in which Joba Chamberlain states he wants to be in the Yankees starting rotation.
Chamberlain is planning to report to Tampa this week, ahead of many others. The team has told him to prepare as if he is a starting pitcher, so that's what he is going to do. Joba will be competing with Phil Hughes, Sergio Mitre, Alfredo Aceves and Chad Gaudin for the one available spot in the rotation.
Last season Chamberlain started 31 games for the Yankees and struggled at times. Toward the end of the year, the Yankees put an innings limit on the youngster. He finished the year with a 9-6 record while posting a 4.78 ERA. Chamberlain only struck out 132 hitters in the 156.1 innings he pitched. That well below the rate at which he struck out batter when pitching in relief.
Phil Hughes is the other young pitcher that will get a long look this spring. Hughes has shown flashes of greatness while struggling at other times. Last season he started seven games and posted a 3-2 record with a 5.45 ERA in those games. Hughes eventually joined the bullpen and was dominant for most of the season. He seemed comfortable in that role. Until the postseason. Hughes struggled in the playoffs when coming out of the bullpen. Chamberlain was also part of the bullpen in the playoffs and pitched well.
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