Corbin Burnes is latest star pitcher to put MLB on blast over pitcher injuries

The O's ace offered his thoughts on the rash of early-season injuries.
Baltimore Orioles pitcher Corbin Burnes
Baltimore Orioles pitcher Corbin Burnes / G Fiume/GettyImages

The Baltimore Orioles got an A-plus effort from their frontline starter on Tuesday. Corbin Burnes dispatched of the Boston Red Sox in ace-like fashion, going seven innings, walking two batters while striking out six, and only allowing one run courtesy of Tyler O'Neill's league-leading sixth home run.

What O's fans are seeing from Burnes is exactly what every team wants in their No. 1 starter. Burnes has been utterly dominant and incredibly pitch efficient. The right-hander needed just 90 pitches to get through the seven innings he threw on Tuesday.

But while Burnes' performance on the mound was outstanding, the former Cy Young Award-winner did offer up some controversial comments during his postgame interview. Pitcher injuries have been a major topic of discussion during the first few weeks of the 2024 season, and Burnes gave his take on why the injuries have become so prevalent.

Orioles' Corbin Burnes is latest star pitcher to put MLB on blast over pitcher injuries

"MLB's going to tell you it's not pitch clock related," Burnes said. "I would argue that injuries, long-term injuries, are up the last two years, and the rate we're having injuries this year is something like we've never seen before. So, there's a problem. It's got to be fixed."

Burnes isn't entirely wrong. The rate at which pitchers are landing on the injured list is rather alarming. Already this season, players like Framber Valdez (Houston Astros), Shane Bieber (Cleveland Guardians), Gerrit Cole (New York Yankees), and Spencer Strider (Atlanta Braves) have hit the IL with various elbow ailments.

Burnes' comments are in line with what the Major League Baseball Player's Association released last week. The MLBPA cited changes the league made to the pitch clock and the health impacts of reduced recovery time.

While Burnes has a point, and MLB's insistence to reduce the game times to a tight two-hour and thirty-minute blitz is crazy, more and more former pitchers have started to speak. Most of those players are citing the fact that players are throwing harder than ever and giving maximum effort on every pitch as the biggest contributing factor when it comes to arm injuries.

No matter what side of the aisle you come down on, Burnes is right about one thing; it needs to be fixed. The league didn't do themselves any favors by adjusting the pitch clock after it's inaugural season, but that doesn't seem to be the only cause for the plethora of pitcher injuries MLB has incurred so far this season.

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