There is much pitching intrigue with the New York clubs this week.
Yankees wunderkind Joba Chamberlain will make his long-considered, long-awaited debut as a starter on Tuesday. Meanwhile, the Mets hope to get a boost when Pedro Martinez, out since injuring a hamstring in his first start, takes the mound Tuesday in San Francisco.
When and if Chamberlain should move from the bullpen, where he has been dominant since coming up in August, to the rotation has been hotly debated inside the Yankees' organization for months. The Yanks baseball people have tried to protect the prized 22-year-old's right arm by watching his workload in the bullpen. But Hank Steinbrenner, the man calling the shots for his father's club, wants the young fireballer to start.
Chamberlain's statistics in his first 472/3 major-league innings, all as a reliever, are impressive. He allowed just seven earned runs and 28 hits while striking out 64. However, immediate success in the rotation is not a given. He has just 15 professional starts and only one above double A.