The New York Yankees have an uncanny way of taking care of members of their family, whether it be past or present, so we here at The Greedy Pinstripes like to do the same whenever we can. This afternoon is one of those instances as we look at and check in with a former member of the Yankees bullpen and an arm that I personally advocated for the Yankees to sign this offseason on a minor league deal. His name is Joba Chamberlain, maybe you’ve heard of him?
The man simply known as “Joba” was drafted by the New York Yankees and sent on a hot shot courier almost straight to the Major Leagues. Joba and his slider took the league by storm and the only thing that could stop him was a swarm of Cleveland-based midges and a Tommy John surgery that replaced his ulnar collateral ligament. Ever since his UCL replacement surgery Joba has simply not been the same pitcher that lit up American League batters for the Yankees and most recently the right-hander, still somehow just 31-years old, signed a deal to pitch for the Milwaukee Brewers in 2017.
Joba signed a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training this season and this week he threw his first live batting practice of the spring. Joba could be an asset to a team that is in the midst of a rebuild like the Milwaukee Brewers are, especially considering his 385 regular season games of experience as well as his 21 postseason appearances he has under his belt, and manager Craig Counsell seems intrigued by having Joba on his roster on Opening Day. This all sounds good on paper but Joba has to put in the work though and thus far, and yes it is extremely early, he has.
Joba knows he has to put in the work but all signs point to him having fun in Brewers camp as well and that may be the most important thing of all. You have to be comfortable where you are in order to do well and you have to have fun as well or what’s really the point? So far so good for Joba, here’s to hoping he continues the good work in Brewers camp this spring.