February 3, 2010

Joba wants to start, willing to relieve

The New York Post had a couple items on the looming Joba/Hughes decision today.

First up: Mike Puma spoke with Joba Chamberlain at the Thurman Munson awards dinner last night.

Joba on being a starter:
"I made 31 starts last year, and hopefully I'll make the same and get about 200 innings," Chamberlain said. "As a competitor, you want to be out there every fifth day [starting]. I want that opportunity. I have to go out and prove it, and I nderstand that. I like it that way."
Joba on being a reliever:
"Being down [in the bullpen] for two stints, you get to see how good [Rivera] is, and you know there is going to have to be somebody who comes behind him that replaces the legacy that is Mariano," Chamberlain said. "If that opportunity comes, great. If we sit down and they say that, then we'll get after it."
Remember, Chamberlain pitched his final game last year as a reliever and had 10 more appearances in the postseason. Most importantly, his pitching style did in fact change and arguably was a more effective pitcher.

Second item: Joel Sherman blogged about the repercussions of Phil Hughes and Chamberlain switching roles in 2010.

Sherman on what would be the "Hughes rules:"
Whatever the Yanks would decide, Hughes would almost certainly not be allowed to work without restrictions that keep him well shy of 200 innings.
Sherman is absolutely right. Nobody should expect Hughes to throw over 200 innings if he wins the job in spring training.

I want to link back to this post again on why I think this big decision should NOT be made based on who is more impressive in spring training. I've only received one refuting argument so far, and I still think I have a valid case.

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