The 26 year old right hander is optimistic about getting back on the mound sooner rather than later. Joba was interviewed recently by Anthony McCarron of the New York Daily News regarding his surgeries and rehab.
“If you ask me where I’m at I believe I can break camp with the team. Will it happen? Probably not, but I have not had one setback,” said Chamberlain.
Joba has been rehabbing much of this off season in Pensacola, Florida with the staff of his surgeon, Dr. James Andrews. Recently under the watchful eye of Yankee pitching coach Larry Rothschild in Tampa, Joba has been throwing off flat ground.
Even though Joba may feel physically ready the Yankees won’t be taking any unnecessary chances. Everyone remembers the “Joba Rules” so the Yankee hierarchy will stick to the usual timetable with this injury of 10 to 13 months. Chamberlain had surgery in June of last year so the safe bet on his return would be July.
When asked about his big right hander’s possible early return, Yankee general manager Brian Cashman said, “He’s committed and dedicated and that’s great, but we have to be sure to maintain that he does everything at the right pace and doesn’t go too far ahead. The time frame is there for a reason.”
Not long after the elbow surgery Chamberlain had emergency surgery for a ruptured appendix. This in turn caused an infection which required an additional surgery. None of these extra surgeries has deterred him from his goal of getting back on the mound as soon as possible.
“When you’re at this point there’s not really a schedule,” says Chamberlain. “It’s how your arm reacts. As of right now, I feel right on schedule with everybody else.”
Joba has been long tossing at 150 feet and hasn’t experienced any swelling or pain. After taking a few weeks off, he will resume rehabbing than head to Tampa by late January.
“It’s been a great off season for me physically and mentally,” said Chamberlain. “I want to take what I’ve learned and go from there.”
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