Not all players are fans of MLB's new pitch clock
Almost everyone loves the pitch clock.
White Sox starter Lucas Giolito loves it because there's no time to think if he gets behind in the count.
"I don't have that time to think about everything and be walking around," he said. "Like, nope. Get the ball. Fire a strike. Let's go. C'mon. Keep it moving. I'm enjoying that."
Cubs manager David Ross feels the same way.
"It's great for baseball -- the time of game, the pace, the action," Ross said. "I think it's fun. I have no complaints."
But there are a few outliers who made some interesting points when being interviewed for a story revolving around adding time to the clock -- or turning it off completely -- in the ninth inning and beyond.
Chief among them were Cubs pitchers Marcus Stroman and Mark Leiter Jr.
Said Stroman: "People are pitching rushed and out of breath. Look at a clock, worry about the pitch call, look at the runners, worry about your delivery, your mechanics, try to catch your breath. It's a lot."
Leiter echoed that thought during a 15-minute interview and presented a compelling case for why Major League Baseball should lengthen time between pitches. Few have more experience with the clock than Leiter, too, as he dealt with numerous variations in the minors for more than five years.
Here were Leiter's main points:
• "I guess what I would say is we went from no clock to the lowest possible number they thought we could be comfortable at -- and I don't see a reason for that. The games are obviously quicker. I think the flow is good and all that, but if you ask most guys ... they'll tell you they feel a little rushed at times. Sure, we're good enough to adapt to it, but there's really no reason not to add five seconds or so at all times."
• "In between batters you're processing the at-bat you just had. We're not playing a video game. We're thinking out there. We're strategizing how we're going to attack the next hitter."
• "There's a lot of proof out there that says as a pitcher the faster you go the more advantage you have. At the same time, there's certain pitches throughout the game that are a little more intense than the others. ... All of a sudden you're on the fifth or sixth pitch, it's like, 'OK, this has been a long at-bat.' Sometimes you want to take a deep breath and think about what you're gonna do right here instead of: 'All right, what's he calling? No. No. All right, gotta go.'"
• "If they're considering that they need to change the clock in the playoffs, think of how disrespectful it is to the season. I know the playoffs mean more at the end of the day, but every game we play is pushing toward that. So if you think the playoffs needed more time then you're just saying you don't care what we feel like during the season. Somebody in my situation, every game I pitch is a playoff game. I want to establish that I belong here. The game has meaning for all 162, not just in the playoffs."