The Yankees' 7th Inning Guy™ will be a free agent at the end of the season. That guy is Joba Chamberlain. He's already made noise because he says he thinks he can still start, even when zero people are currently discussing the idea. Judging by Brian Cashman's reaction to the news, the Yankees have no plans to try him as a starter. Because of David Robertson there is no chance Joba will become the closer after Mariano Rivera leaves. The Yankees can then either sign Chamberlain to a lucrative deal as a middle reliever, or not spend any money on a middle reliever and replace him with the likes of Mark Montgomery, who would make the league minimum. If you don't know the option the Yankees will choose, that's ok, but it's going to involve not signing Joba.
Instead of keeping Chamberlain around for a year to pitch in the middle of the game, the team could instead trade him and possibly get something back they actually need. If they trade him, David Aardsma could easily take over that coveted job in the seventh inning or maybe Montgomery is ready to be brought up. Instead of a one inning reliever, they could get someone who can play in the infield or someone who can play in the outfield.
Right now the Tigers are having second thoughts about handing the closing job to their top relief prospect Bruce Rondon. He's been shaky in Spring Training and the team doesn't seem to have an immediate backup plan. They want nothing less than to reunite with Jose Valverde and they don't seem to remember that they have Al Alburquerque on the team. If they want a potential backup for their closer of the future they could use Joba Chamberlain and breathe a sigh of relief. (badoom tish)
Right now it doesn't seem like a big deal, but Indians closer, Chris Perez, has a shoulder injury that should be fine by Opening Day, but if there's a setback the team is going to be without a closer. They do have Vinnie Pestano and Matt Capps is a non-roster invitee so they have their options, but if they feel they need outside help they could look for Joba Chamberlain to bring some stability to the back end of their bullpen.
The Rangers have apparently been scouting Joba this spring so they could be interested in using him in some capacity. They seem to have the back end of the bullpen set with Joe Nathan and Joakim Soria on the team, but their trouble filling rotation spots could cause the team to look at Joba as a starter. Their top pitching prospect Martin Perez was hit with a comebacker and broke his arm. Neftali Feliz and Colby Lewis are still recovering from surgery so they won't be ready for Opening Day. If they think that stretching him out as a starter will help them then the Yankees should pursue a trade with them.
Would you trade Joba and who would you want back in return?