If you’re paying attention, you can somewhat get the sense that Yankees fans have a slight disdain towards Joba Chamberlain because they’ve expected more from him through the years. And this latest development won’t help that feeling at all.
While the Yankees were in Kansas City over the weekend, Chamberlain and Mariano Rivera got into a tense verbal exchange. Prior to the start of a game, Rivera was doing an interview with reporters. Not too far away, Chamberlain was in the stands greeting family (and fans) who had made the trip from Nebraska to see him play. Apparently, Chamberlain was so loud that he was unknowingly interrupting Rivera’s interview.
That’s when Rivera turned to Chamberlain and said “Joba! Yo! Bro!” Rivera shouted. “Shhh. Stop it.”
Who knows if Rivera said that in a playful or disrespectful manner, but either way, Joba took it as a sign of disrespect. As he should. I would’ve been taken aback as well. Joba turned to Mo and replied “Don’t ever shush me again,” in full view of reporters and fans, according to the NY Daily News.
“Don’t ever shush me again,” said Chamberlain, who started his career as a reliever before becoming a starter for the Yankees and is now in the bullpen again. The Yankees employed the so-called Joba Rules earlier in his career when they monitored his inning and pitch counts.
Rivera nodded with a bit of a smile, at which point Chamberlain — looking stone-faced without a trace of a smile — said, “Seriously. Don’t ever shush me again. I don’t get to see my family very often.”
Rivera opted not to get into an argument, telling Chamberlain, “I didn’t say not to talk to your family. That’s all right. You can talk to your family any time you want.”
It will be interesting to see what type of fallout ensues from this.
But as I stated previously, Chamberlain was well within his right to be offended. But he picked the wrong guy to voice his displeasure towards. It’s pretty obvious who Yankees fans will side with.