Joba Chamberlain once looked poised to enjoy a very successful big league career. But after some injury problems and a failed starting pitching experiment, there are now some questions as to what exactly he’s capable of accomplishing.
Not everyone is concerned, though. According to the New York Post, the Texas Rangers are scouting Chamberlain, perhaps sensing that the Yankees view their bullpen as an area of depth from which they could deal.
The New York Post reports that Don Welke, a senior special assistant to Rangers general manager Jon Daniels, was at Steinbrenner Field on Monday, specifically to watch Chamberlain pitch an inning against the Cardinals. The right-hander gave up a hit in a scoreless inning in that outing, and his fastball registered at 92-95 mph on the radar gun.
ESPN.com’s Andrew Marchand reports that the Rangers have had “mild interest” in Chamberlain, and still think that he’s got a good arm.
Chamberlain pitched in 22 games out of the New York bullpen last season, going 1-0 with a 4.35 ERA in 20 2/3 innings. The big righty has had a roller coaster career since breaking into the majors in 2007. He has battled multiple injury problems, including Tommy John surgery in 2011, and the Yankees also made the regrettable decision to try and transform him back into a starter after he burst onto the scene as a reliever.
Chamberlain has also been rather outspoken during his career, even recently expressing a desire to be a starter or a closer. Some have speculated that such remarks could cause him to fall out of favor in the Bronx, but it remains to be seen whether it’ll be enough for the Yankees to consider striking a deal.