Joba Chamberlain Injury: Yankees Reliever Scheduled For Tommy John Surgery

Joba Chamberlain has a torn ligament in his elbow, and will undergo season-ending surgery.

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Medical Report: Joba Chamberlain's Throwing Motion a Key Factor

Even if Tommy John surgery repairs Joba Chamberlain's elbow, a change in mechanics may be in order.


Joba Chamberlain Injury: Tommy John Surgery Scheduled For Yankees Reliever

For a while, Yankees reliever Joba Chamberlain was pitching without showing any symptoms of a major arm injury. However, he hit the disabled list on Wednesday with what was termed a flexor strain, and further examination revealed a tear in his UCL. Nobody at all saw that coming, but nobody could ignore it, either. Manager Joe Girardi conceded that Tommy John surgery appeared likely, and sure enough, on Friday, we've got confirmation. Sweeny Murti:

Joba Chamberlain will undergo Tommy John surgery next week, performed by Dr James Andrews.

If it's any consolation, at least Chamberlain is having his operation done by the best, instead of some guy you've never heard of. It's always incredible to me when I sit back and think about how famous certain surgeons have become, all thanks to baseball.

The surgery will knock Chamberlain out for the rest of the 2011 season, and presumably for the first half of the 2012 season as well. If all goes smoothly, Chamberlain could be back on the mound as a contributor to the Yankees' stretch run next year.


Kevin Whelan Called Up To Take Joba Chamberlain's Spot

With Joba Chamberlain likely out for the year, the New York Yankees called up 27-year-old Kevin Whelan from triple-A to take his spot in the bullpen. Well, not Joba's exact spot, but rather the back-end of the bullpen, which will push everyone up a rung.

The Times-Tribune broke the story, noting that Whelan was the closer for Scranton Wilkes-Barre, where he was performing quite well:


Year Age Tm Lg Lev W L W-L% ERA G SV IP H ER HR BB SO
2011 27 Scranton/Wilkes-Barre IL AAA 1 1 .500 1.67 25 18 27.0 17 5 3 6 30
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 6/10/2011.


Whelan was drafted by the Tigers in 2005, and traded to the Yankees in the Gary Sheffield deal in 2007. He's pitched well enough in the minors, though he's always fought control problems. Last season was his worst as a professional, as he walked 31 in 49-1/3 innings, with a combined ERA of 6.02 between AA and AAA. His control has been much better this year, though, so he was rewarded with a long-awaited call-up.


Joba Chamberlain's Elbow Just the Exclamation Point

Joba Chamberlain has always been coddled, but that wasn't enough to keep him from succumbing to an elbow injury.


Joba Chamberlain Injury: Surgery A Possibility For Yankees Reliever

On Wednesday, the New York Yankees placed reliever Joba Chamberlain on the disabled list with a flexor strain. The news came as a surprise, since Chamberlain didn't seem to be showing any symptoms of an injury, but we were told he was going to rest for 10-14 days before being re-evaluated.

Now, on Thursday, the news is even worse. I'll let Ben Shpigel give you the limited but grisly details:

Torn ligament for joba.

Girardi isn't sure, but thinks tommy john surgery for joba

Joba passed his strength tests, but an exam on his elbow revealed the tear, apparently to his UCL. We don't know anything about the severity of the tear, but if Joe Girardi thinks that Tommy John surgery is a possibility, that suggests the tear is near-complete, if not entirely complete.

So we'll see where this goes. If Joba does have ligament replacement surgery, he'll be done for 2011 and much of 2012. If he doesn't, he is still looking at a lengthy rehab that will keep him away from the Yankees for a good chunk of the season, if he returns at all. Sometimes attempting to rehab a torn ligament is just delaying the inevitable.

That untouchable bullpen the Yankees thought they'd put together over the offseason suddenly looks more vulnerable than ever.


Joba Chamberlain Injury: Yankees Reliever Hits DL With Flexor Strain

In news that seems to have come from nowhere, but in reality did not, Wednesday the New York Yankees placed reliever Joba Chamberlain on the disabled list with an elbow injury. Bryan Hoch:

Joba Chamberlain has been placed on the disabled list with a strained flexor muscle, Joe Girardi said.

Chamberlain will be out 10-14 days and then may resume throwing, so this looks like it will knock him out for three to four weeks minimum.

Girardi said that Chamberlain likely has been pitching with the issue for a short while.

It's not necessarily evident in the numbers how long Chamberlain has been pitching through discomfort, as he hasn't allowed any runs in his last eight appearances. But now the Yankees are down another reliever. Already without Rafael Soriano, they may have to survive without Chamberlain for a month, if not longer.

Chamberlain owns a 2.83 ERA over 29 innings, with 24 strikeouts, so he'll definitely be missed. David Robertson's role will now only grow more important. Fortunately, Luis Ayala has pitched exceptionally well and will presumably move up in the pecking order, and new arm Jeff Marquez could also be of some service.

Meanwhile, Amauri Sanit will take Chamberlain's place on the roster. The diminutive righty reliever has 25 strikeouts in 19 triple-A innings, but minimal Major League experience. He'll presumably see low-leverage situations.

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