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CC Sabathia coming back, so Joba Chamberlain being sent down?

Joba Chamberlain and CC Sabathia stand at attention

Joba Chamberlain and CC Sabathia stand at attention during the national anthem. (July 31, 2012) Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

CHICAGO — With CC Sabathia all but certain to come off the disabled list Friday, the Yankees will have to make a roster move.

And there are strong indications pointing to Joba Chamberlain being sent to the minors to work out the command issues that have plagued him since he returned from the DL July 31.

General manager Brian Cashman, though he wouldn’t engage in speculation on what the roster move will be, spoke generally about what he’s seen from Chamberlain since he’s been activated.

“Obviously his arm strength is there, the command is not,” Cashman said yesterday afternoonTuesday afternoon by phone. “First year back after Tommy John, guys typically have their stuff but not their command. He’ll continue to get a chance to pitch and work through it.”

Since his return Chamberlain, away 14 months recovering from Tommy John surgery and then an ankle injury sustained on a trampoline, has allowed seven runs and 15 hits in 62/3 innings.

Joe Girardi, pressed after Monday’s game about Chamberlain, whom he admitted is “scuffling,” didn’t sound like a manager guaranteeing the reliever a big-league roster spot.

“I don’t anticipate making any moves tonight,” Girardi said after Monday’s game, one in which Chamberlain allowed a run and two hits in two-thirds of an inning.

Left unsaid, of course, was the move needed to be made Friday.

CC on schedule


Sabathia (left elbow inflammation) has maintained since being put on the DL Aug. 11 that he would pitch Friday night’s game in Cleveland, and all indications after a 38-pitch bullpen session is he’ll do just that.

“I threw everything today and felt really good,” Sabathia said. “I feel good about going out there on Friday.”

Girardi has hedged on declaring the lefthander his Friday starter, saying he wants to see how Sabathia feels Wednesday. Still, Girardi said before Tuesday Sabathia was “likely” to be set for Friday.

New York Sports