HomeTrending MLB NewsThe Pinstripe’s pitching shines despite the injury epidemic around the league

The Pinstripe’s pitching shines despite the injury epidemic around the league

Meet the second week of the New York Yankees 2024 campaign, the same as the first. The Bombers looked to continue their hot start against the Miami Marlins Wednesday night. Going into Wednesday night’s game, New York met bad news with great performances.

The Yankees start the season without pitcher Gerrit Cole. Let’s reel off a four-game sweep of the Houston Astros. Another pitcher with a bleak injury (Johnathan Loaisaga)? Take two out of three from the Arizona Diamondbacks. Take two out of three from the Toronto Blue Jays. Take two from the Miami Marlins. Juan Soto’s started the season doing Juan Soto things. The slugger blasted his first Yankee home run to right field on Monday. He’s hitting .348/.456/.522 with then walks in the first 12 games of this season. Aaron Judge leads the team with 11 and has gotten on base at an impressive .382 despite hitting .195. As a team, the Yankees are fourth in on-base percentage with .346.

The Yankees have had an answer for everything. Ironically, much of that can be attributed to the pitching. As a team, the Yankees’ pitching staff has recorded a 2.48 ERA with a league-average WHIP (1.28) and a. FIP under four. It’s a good sign that the team pitching started the season smoothly. It’s not the case for the rest of the league.

In the past year, elbow and elbow adjacent injuries have shattered the season for several high-profile pitchers, including Gerrit Cole, Jacob deGrom, Shane McClanahan, Felix Bautista, Shohei Otani Framber Valdez, Spencer Strider, and Sandy Alcantara. Many of these injuries led to or will lead to Tommy John surgery, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2024.

The Major League Baseball Players Association blames the pitch clock. In a statement, MLBPA Executive Director Tony Clark said that the league needs to look at the impact it’s allegedly made on a rash of injuries with pitchers around the league. Clark said the league reducing the maximum time between pitches last December hurt the quality of play.

“The league’s unwillingness thus far to acknowledge or study the effects of these profound changes is an unprecedented threat to our game and its most valuable asset — the Players,” stated Clark.

In response, the league said that Clark’s statement “…ignores the empirical evidence and much more significant long-term trend, over multiple decades, of velocity and spin increases highly correlated with arm injuries. Nobody wants to see pitchers get hurt in this game, which is why MLB is currently undergoing a significant comprehensive research study into the causes of this long-term increase, interviewing prominent medical experts across baseball, which to date has been consistent with an independent analysis by Johns Hopkins University that found no evidence to support that the introduction of the pitch clock has increased injuries.”

The league also stated that nothing in Johns Hopkins University’s analysis showed a connection to an injury increase in pitchers who sped up their pace. “JHU also found no evidence that pitchers who sped up their pace were more likely to sustain an injury than those who did not.”

Stephon Johnson
Stephon Johnson
Stephon Johnson is a journalist, reporter, and writer who's covered sports, politics, education, and labor issues. He’s written for The Athletic, The Sports Fan Journal, The Hardball Times, The Classical, The Cauldron/Sports Illustrated, Baeble Music, Polygon, City & State New York, the New York Amsterdam News, and THE CITY.


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