This was early in the 2007 season when Mike Mussina's fastball vanished, Phil Hughes' hamstring blew and Kei Igawa was quickly establishing himself as a mistake.

The Yankees, injured and desperate, essentially ran a starting pitching tryout camp, but in the major leagues. There was Chase Wright one day and Tyler Clippard another. Matt Desalvo became Darrell Rasner became Jeff Karstens.

A text popped up in early May from a scout I knew well. "I am watching the Yankees' best starter." The scout had covered the Yankees during spring training, but I was pretty sure he was in the Florida State League. So I asked if he was on special assignment somewhere. Nope. "Watching Joba Chamberlain, better than anyone the Yanks have right now."