Joba out with rotator cuff tendinitis, but …

Game 114: One game at a time, one inning at a time, one pitch at a time
Kontos dominant again

According to Brian Cashman, Joba is hitting the DL with rotator cuff tendinitis. The Yanks’ youngster will sit for the next week in New York before beginning a throwing problem designed to strengthen the sore muscles in his arm. While there is no time table for his return, this diagnosis means Joba will be out for much of the remainder of the season.

This is, by and large, the best-case scenario. The Yanks don’t see any need for Joba to go under the knife, and they believe that rest coupled with a throwing program could be enough to bring the righty back to the mound before too long. However, there are a few warning signs, As Tyler Kepner notes, tendinitis could be symptomatic of a more serious injury as was the case when Jorge Posada faced a rotator cuff diagnosis in May. Coupled with yesterday’s quotes from Harlan Chamberlain, I’m optimistic but cautiously so concerning Joba. We may not see him again this year, but it seems as though things are far from dire.

Game 114: One game at a time, one inning at a time, one pitch at a time
Kontos dominant again
  • Manimal

    Does this increase the yankees interest in Garcia?

    • Ben K.

      Considering how negative the scouting reports on Garcia were today, I’d say no. But it might increase their interest in pitchers who could actually help them get outs. We’ll see how Giese and Kennedy do this weekend and how Hughes’ and Pavano’s rehabs progress.

      • Chris

        There aren’t many pitchers available that can help them get outs. Pavano, Giese, Kennedy and Hughes are probably all better than any other available options…

  • A.D.

    i’ll take it, difference between he and Posada is Posada was not throwing well, then diagnosed, Posada arm wasn’t strong. Joba’s arm is strong, and was throwing hard into the injury.

    Bring up Brett Marshall??

    • Mike A.

      Brackman’s first in line. ;)

  • blah

    Not to scare anybody, but Chad Cordero was originally diagnosed with rotator cuff tendinitis.

    • Mike A.

      True, but the Yanks took better care of Joba than the Nats did with Cordero. Frank Robinson ran him into the ground.

  • Manimal

    If the yankees think their in a transition year they would shut him down asap. Do the strength training and call it a year. Like I said. Season’s dead, I’m already looking forward to 2009.

  • Nickel

    Geez…is it so much to hope for a season of Yankees baseball where the team DOESN’T lose half a dozen or so starting pitchers to injury over the course of a season? Am I just imagining things or haven’t we been down this road before in recent seasons?

  • The Fallen Phoenix

    Looking at a worst-case scenario, long-term view, the Yankees are going to need to get really creative re: innings caps if it does turn out that Joba Chamberlain doesn’t throw another pitch this year.

    The Yankees could risk a jump from ~90 innings this year to 150 innings next year, figuring that Chamberlain did throw 120 innings two years ago.

    Or, the Yankees could work Chamberlain back to 120 innings for 2009, and shoot for 150 in 2010.

    The good news is, Chamberlain’s still only 22 years old. He’s still a few years away from his prime, and if the Yankees are ultra-conservative and he doesn’t get paced to throw his first 200 inning season until 2012 or so, Chamberlain would still be in his relative prime (26) by then. Furthermore, by having Joba pitch fewer innings earlier in his career (more importantly, fewer innings through the injury nexus), it might actually increase the longevity of his career.

    Not exactly an analogous situation, but think of Doc Gooden, and all the innings he put on his arm at an early age. Now granted, there were other extraneous circumstances that did not exactly apply to the Doc re: his career falling apart, and baseball organizations have come a long way just these last five years in protecting and cultivating young pitching, but I strongly believe that fewer innings now=potential for more innings later.

    Of course, one also needs to consider, philosophically, if it would be better for the Yankees organization to have a Sandy Koufax-like peak for Joba while he’s still young (physical prime) and cheap (under team control his first six seasons) and then flame out, as opposed to a longer career arc without the same kind of peak. I’m not trying to say Joba aged 24-27 would be Koufax if he were primed to throw the 200 innings that his rumored innings cap this year would have suggested he’d be at for that stretch of his career. I am saying that we don’t know how long Joba’s stuff will keep as he ages, but that the further he gets from his age 25-26 season, the likelier it is that there’s some recession there.

  • Alex

    Was it just me or did Joba seem to be throwing a much larger percentage of breaking balls during his last start that he typically would. Is it possible this might be an explanation not only for the injury but also for the number of balls in play?

  • NC Saint

    “We may not see him again this year, but it seems as though things are far from dire.”

    For him, and thus for our future. But losing our #1 starter may be the last straw for this season. I’m certainly not throwing in the towel: Hughes and/or Kennedy could come back strong. But as young as he was, Joba had become our anchor, and we could quickly turn into a team with 0-2 reliable starters. That’s not the stuff comebacks are made of.

  • Dimgaggio5

    Given all the injuries we have had, it is a miracle we are anywhere near contention. However Cashman has to take some of the blame by not signing some cheap veterans who were available instead of relying so heavily on the younger guys. Cash seems to have no plan if Hughes and/or Kennedy did not work out.

    Girardi also deserves credit for handling this disaster.

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  • MD

    I think it’s time to bring up Karstens…….oh, right

  • Axl

    We’re cursed I tell you! Cursed!!! Get the Exorcist!!! We need to get rid of this curse!!!!


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