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A heavyweight discussion


Joba Chamberlain said Wednesday would be the "last day" he answered questions about his weight and no one else around the Yankees wanted to get much into specifics either.

Brian Cashman pretty much repeated word for word what he told Newsday's Ken Davidoff Tuesday when first asked about Chamberlain’s weight, listed at 230 in last season’s postseason media guide but more than that now, as all involved admit.

“He’s obviously heavier,” Cashman said Wednesday. “That’s as much as I’ll say."

Is it a goal to have him lighter by the end of camp?

“He’s heavier and we’ll just leave it at that,” Cashman said.

As I wrote in the story for Thursday's paper, it must be made clear that Chamberlain is far from being fat. He said early last week shortly after arriving in Tampa to work out at the team’s minor league complex that he added muscle in the offseason, the result of putting a gym in his Nebraska home.

“I would probably say I’m in better shape than I have been in a couple of years,” Chamberlain said Wednesday. 

Manager Joe Girardi, while saying every player is given a suggested weight in which to show up to camp and not answering whether Chamberlain checked in at his, stressed several times the righthander hasn’t seemed out of shape.

“He’s done fine,” Girardi said. “He’s moved fine. He’s had no issues.”

Chamberlain has thrown his normal amount of bullpens and looked good doing so.

“He looks better throwing bullpens now than he did last year,” Girardi said. “That’s encouraging for us. He wouldn’t be able to do the running he’s doing if he didn’t work out and he wouldn’t’ be throwing the baseball like he is if he didn’t work out.”

Still, for a pitcher whose roster spot is assured, Girardi did take mental note of the heavier Chamberlain and wonder.

"You think about it as a manager, you think about what it says," Girardi said. "But as I said, Joba’s going to be evaluated on how he pitches, that’s the bottom line. We’ve been very pleased with what we’ve seen so far."


New York Sports