Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Joba, the starter

I'll leave the plunking of Bay aside for a moment. Once he settled down after a rough first inning, Joba was flat out incredible. He finished with 12 K's, including 8 STRAIGHT at one point.

So can we please, finally, put the "Joba-should-be-an-8th-inning pitcher" crap to rest?

Pete Abe has some good live-blogging quotes:

  • UPDATE, 8:20 p.m.: I’m sure the put-Joba-in-the-bullpen chuckleheads enjoyed the first inning. Meanwhile, he has struck out seven of the last 11 batters he has faced. This just in: He’s not going to be Bob Gibson every inning. He’s 23 and in his first full year as a big league starter. He’s figuring it all out. Give him a chance. He could be great. Not good, great.

  • UPDATE, 8:40 p.m.: Witness and behold Joba Chamberlain, who is filthy as filthy can be these last four innings. He has fanned 10 of the last 16 batters he has faced, eight of them looking.

    Word around the league was that Chamberlain could not throw his slider for a strike and to lay off it. That is no longer the case.

    Anybody who wants to waste this kid in the bullpen is clinically stupid.

  • UPDATE, 9:08 p.m: The last time a Yankee fanned 12 was Mike Mussina on May 7, 2007 at Seattle. The last Yankee to K 12 in the Boogie Down was Moose on Sept. 24, 2002.

    But by all means, let’s use him in the eighth inning. That way he can strike out three guys.
The drilling of Bay was certainly curious. Payback for "alleged" sign-stealing yesterday? Payback for Bay's monster HR in the first? Or just pitching inside? If you can say definitively, you are a fan of one team or the other, since there's no way to know for sure. He didn't stand on the hill and glare at Bay. He didn't walk towards Bay defiantly like Beckett did to Abreu earlier this year. He hit Bay in the ribs and spun off the mound.

I will note this, too, from my limited observations of the team this year: they do seem to be pitching on the inside half more than I have seen in prior years. An organizational committment to recapture that part of the zone, perhaps?


ditmars1929 said...

No, the big mouth shouldn't be in the pen. But yet, 12 strikeouts, impressive as that is, and he still gets his ass handed to him in one inning for a loss. No thanks to the line up either, but still....

Anonymous said...

Watch the replays again,Joba absolutely walked towards the plate after he hit Bay

If Bay didn't put his head down and start towards first, and instead went with the Abreu reaction, I could definitely see the benches clearing in this instance as well

Jason @ IIATMS said...

Anon: I saw Joba follow thru and turn left, as he is often does, circling behind the mound. Bay glared at him (rightfully so) and that was it.

But I'll try to take another look.

Bill said...

I love the argument (which I most recently heard from Rob Dibble, which is really all you need to know, but I've heard it from all over) that Joba belongs in the bullpen because you can only "impact" maybe 30, 35 games as a starter, but you can "impact" 70 or 80 games as a reliever.

Why don't people think before they say crap like this? And why doesn't the same logic apply to other positions? A healthy Martinez, Mauer or McCann could only catch (ahem, "impact") 140 games or so, but I'd be willing to bet that they could "impact" all 162 if they sever started a game, but only came in to catch the 8th and 9th innings every day. Why aren't the same people calling for that to happen?

tadthebad said...


It may take a fan of one of the teams to trot out the old "...we just don't know..." line. You know it, I know it. As you said, he was absolutely filthy, locating pitches wherever he wants, but then ...ooops? A fastball just gets away from him by about 1.5' inside? Please. This is a pitcher who we know has no real problem throwing over batters' heads, or behind them. He hit Bay intentionally.