Joba Chamberlain’s weight became the talk of camp today, as Brian Cashman said that the right-hander is “heavier” before saying that he didn’t want to discuss the issue in further detail.
“He’s heavier. Let’s just leave it at that,” Cashman said. “Anything else, we’ll deal with.”
Chamberlain contends that he bulked up over the winter, building a gym in the basement of his Lincoln, Neb. home. He said he feels stronger physically and that he feels better when throwing his bullpens, as he did today to Russell Martin.
“I would probably say that I’m in better shape than I have been in a couple years,” Chamberlain said. “The running is great, running’s never easy, but it’s something that I don’t dread every day. It’s a peace of mind for me when I run.”
On that subject, Joe Girardi backs up Chamberlain, saying that he has had no difficulty keeping up with the rest of the pitchers during their workouts. Girardi said that he thought Chamberlain’s longer hair was more noticeable than any weight gain, and said Chamberlain’s status would be judged on his performance.
“Joba’s went through all the drills fine,” Girardi said. “I watched him run yesterday, he was fine. I’ve watched him throw. I’ve been very happy with the way he’s throwing the baseball. Weight can be a tricky issue sometimes. You’re evaluated on how you pitch, and a lot of times, if you’re not pitching well, they’ll say you’re too heavy or you’re too light. If you’re pitching well, no one says a word. It’s the same guy.”