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It’s always about the money

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You have to hand it to Joba Chamberlain, he has the Nuke LaLoosh cliches down to a science.

Here’s what Joba had to say about the Yankees renewing his contract for $390,000:

“I don’t play the game to get paid. I play the game to enjoy it and love it. The paycheck’s a bonus. What do I have to complain about?”

Golly, that’s sweet. Some people even believed it.

What Joba didn’t mention is that a team renews a player’s contract only when that player refuses to sign a contract because he’s mad at the amount of money offered.

Oh, and Joba didn’t pitch in the minors for the Yankees in 2006 because he was holding out for a larger signing bonus after he was drafted. He ended up with $1.15 million. That was the most of any player in the supplemental first round and two players taken in the first round.

Don’t me wrong, Joba is a good kid and by all accounts he is generous with his money. He should get every dime he can from the Yankees. But spare us the “I don’t play for money” routine.

Two good rules of thumb to remember when you read sports stories: Injuries are always worse then what the team or athlete says and when somebody says it’s not about the money, it’s really, really about the money.