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Friday, May 17, 2013
Joba focused on strengthening obliques

By Matt Ehalt

New York Yankees reliever Joba Chamberlain (oblique) said he's focusing on making sure he strengthens his obliques after not getting activated off the disabled list for Thursday's 3-2 loss to Seattle.

There had been speculation that Chamberlain could have been called up, but Yankees manager Joe Girardi said prior to the game that Chamberlain "isn't quite there yet." The team instead promoted Dellin Betances.

"This is one of the things where you have to make sure it's done and taken care of, you don't want to let it linger on throughout the rest of the season," Chamberlain said. "Continuing to get it stronger, play catch and throw another side, and go from there."

Chamberlain said he plans to play catch on Friday and is not sure when his next outing will be, although he assumes it's going to be in Triple-A. He last pitched Tuesday for Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, allowing two hits but no runs over 12 pitches. Chamberlain went on the disabled list on May 3 retroactive to April 28. He has a 3.86 ERA spanning 9 1/3 innings.

"Just to be able to trust it and know when you want to go get it, it's there and you don't have to hold anything back. Whether subconsciously you're doing that or not, or whether you are getting ready to jump on it, you want to know it's there," Chamberlain said. "One of those things where I want to make sure it's strong and we've done some exercises to keep strengthening it the last couple of days."