Q&A with Joba Chamberlain
Yankees starting pitcher Joba Chamberlain spent his Wednesday afternoon playing Guitar Hero: Aerosmith with some lucky fans. He took a break to talk to us about a variety of subjects.
SI.com: Are you a big Guitar Hero fan? (Video of Joba playing against his best friend can be found here.)
Chamberlain: Yeah. I haven't played lately, but during spring training and when I'm home I play a lot. It's a nice getaway and gives you a chance to be a kid, slow things down and have some fun. I love that I could trash talk to my friends in California or Florida or wherever they're at. It's pretty sweet.
SI.com: What's your favorite song to perform?
Chamberlain: I just played Love in an Elevator. That's a great song. You can't go wrong with anything from Aerosmith.
SI.com: Do a lot of guys on the team play? And if so, who's good and who's bad?
Chamberlain: Yeah, there are a lot of us who play during spring training. Phil Hughes is OK. Shelly Duncan is OK. Jason Giambi isn't very good, but he loves the game.
SI.com: Do you ever worry about pulling a Joel Zumaya?
Chamberlain: [Laughing] Yeah, you think about it, but it's a one in a million thing. A lot of guys play it all the time and nothing happens.
SI.com: What else do you play besides Guitar Hero?
Chamberlain: I play them all. As a sports fan, I love all sports games. Everybody made fun of me because played nothing but the sports game. They said if I played Guitar Hero I'd get addicted and I told them there's no shot. Next thing you know, I'm playing for five hours straight.
SI.com: You mentioned that you liked Aerosmith. What other kinds of music do you like?
Chamberlain: I listen to everything. It all depends what mood I'm in. If I'm trying to go to sleep, I like stuff that's a little slower. If you wanna get going, it's rap or something that gets your heart going. I like all kinds of music.
SI.com: What was the last song you downloaded?
Chamberlain: I think it was a James Taylor song.
SI.com: What's the last movie you watched?
Chamberlain: I just saw The Bucket List.
SI.com: Did you like it?
Chamberlain: Yeah. It brought me to tears. That's a serious movie.
SI.com: Are you excited for The Dark Knight?
Chamberlain: Yeah, it'll be sweet. I heard it's phenomenal. I'll definitely check it out.
SI.com: And what TV shows do you watch?
Chamberlain: The Fresh Prince of Bel Air. That's my show.
SI.com: Anything more current?
Chamberlain: Well, I got mentioned on Gossip Girl, so I might have to start watching that.
SI.com: When you were a reliever, you came out to Motley Crue's Shout at the Devil. How'd that come about?
Chamberlain: I was mostly coming out in the seventh inning, so that meant I either came out YMCA or the hat race song. But Shout at the Devil is a great song that gets people going. But now that I'm starting, I have to change it up a little bit.
SI.com: Are you a big Internet guy?
Chamberlain: Yeah, definitely.
SI.com: What sites are in your rotation?
Chamberlain: Well, I always check my bank accounts first. I have to make sure nobody's trying to get something over on me. Then I read the sports sites, SI.com, ESPN.com. I like to see what's going on. I read a lot of baseball stuff, but I like to read about other stuff, too, like MMA, NBA.
SI.com: Do you ever see stuff about yourself online that bothers you?
Chamberlain: Oh yeah. But once you start worrying about that, you're in trouble. You gotta have bigger fish to fry.
SI.com: Is there any reason for the flat-brim look?
Chamberlain: I've always done it. I don't know. I'm kinda out there. I'm a very extroverted person. I don't hold much back. That's just how I wear it. I think it's a good look for me.
SI.com: Were you at the All-Star Game?
Chamberlain: I was there.
SI.com: Did you stay until the end?
Chamberlain: Noooooo. It was a long game. I left in the eighth. But words can't describe what an experience it was. All the players who were on the field at one time. It's never gonna happen again at Yankee Stadium and that's my home field. It was pretty special. As a fan of baseball, it's something that I'll never forget.
SI.com: You're from Lincoln, Nebraska. Which is a wilder crowd: Yankee Stadium or Memorial Stadium?
Chamberlain: That's a tough one. As we all know, New York people are different. Yankee Stadium is something that can't be described. The feeling that you get from being a part of it is indescribable. And the people in the stands are incredible. But there's nothing like going to Nebraska and seeing 95,000 people in red. You don't see that too often. As a fan of sports, I think those are both places you gotta visit and see what they're like.
SI.com: Do you ever think about the bugs in Cleveland?
Chamberlain: That's funny you asked that. A buddy of mine is a skateboarder and he's in Cleveland right now and he's been telling me about how bad they are. It's nice somebody else gets to experience it. All I can say is, good luck, Anthony.
SI.com: I was surprised you didn't end up with some bug spray endorsement deal.
Chamberlain: I got nothing. The whole thing just wasn't fun, but I look at it like this: I didn't get my job done. But also, you gotta take what you can from it. It prepared me for anything that can happen in the game of baseball. Hopefully it's not ever gonna happen again. But I know if it happens again I'll know how to handle it. But the bottom line is, I didn't do my job. When I came in, the game was 1-0. When I left it was 1-1. But something good can come from it.
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