Entering Spring Training the Yankees had three big questions to answer. The biggest and most obvious was the role that Joba Chamberlain would play. Hank proclaimed that he wanted Joba to start and Joe Girardi’s insisted that Joba’s future is as a starter, but in the end the Yankees put him in the bullpen for at least the start of 2008. And it makes sense because while they won’t admit it publicly, the Yankees are going to cap Joba’s innings around 140 this year. So, Chamberlain wouldn’t have been able to start for a full season and the Yankees will have their devastating setup guy for at least part of 2008.
Another question heading into camp was what affect the HGH allegations and revelations would have on Andy Pettitte. Pettitte reported to camp late, but handled himself with grace when addressing the issue with the media. Unfortunately, his spring has been interrupted by back trouble and as of right now, the Yankees are unsure of when they will have their lefty up on the mound in the regular season.
Lastly, spring brought questions about the guy who stepped into Joe Torre’s place, Joe Girardi. How would Girardi handle the Yankees and what kind of camp would he run? Girardi certainly showed his way would be different from Torre’s when he reacted angrily to a hard slide that broke his catcher’s wrist. We know what happened next and while it went to far, the Yankees sent the message that they will not take things lying down anymore.