A trainer, left, helps Yankees relief pitcher Joba Chamberlain, who...

A trainer, left, helps Yankees relief pitcher Joba Chamberlain, who was hit by a broken bat during ALDS Game 4. (Oct. 11, 2012) Credit: AP

Joba Chamberlain was removed from Thursday night's ALDS Game 4 after getting hit on the right elbow by the barrel of a broken bat on a single by the Orioles' Matt Wieters.

Chamberlain suffered an elbow contusion in the scary 12th-inning incident. X-rays were negative and the Yankees said he will be re-evaluated before Friday's deciding ALDS Game 5.

As Wieters' broken-bat line drive headed toward leftfield for a hit, the barrel of the bat hit Chamberlain, who went down to one knee in pain. He had his back partially turned and realized too late that the bat was headed his way. After trying some warm-up tosses, he was replaced by eventual losing pitcher David Phelps.

It was Chamberlain's second freak injury this season. While rehabbing from Tommy John elbow surgery, he suffered an open dislocation of his right ankle in a trampoline accident in March. He made his season debut on Aug. 1.

"I don't know if I'd hang out with me very much," said Chamberlain, who had a tight wrap on his elbow. "I might need a bubble."

Chamberlain initially lost sight of the barrel before it hit him. He said the scariest part was thinking the jagged end of the broken bat might hit him.

"Thank God it didn't hit me in the head," he said.

The Yankees will be able to replace Chamberlain on the roster for Game 5 if he is unable to pitch. But he would have to sit out the ALCS if the Yankees advance.

Said Chamberlain, "It's one of those you see how it feels tomorrow and you go from there."

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