Dodgers' Tyler Glasnow’s passionate explanation for elbow injuries still rings true

San Francisco Giants v Los Angeles Dodgers
San Francisco Giants v Los Angeles Dodgers / Kevork Djansezian/GettyImages

Pitcher injuries have been cropping up a lot in just the first few weeks of the season, and they've been stunning in their severity and the rate at which the news just keeps coming. On Monday night, Framber Valdez was scratched from his Astros start with elbow soreness, pending an MRI, following a week of news about Spencer Strider going down with a UCL injury, and the Guardians and Marlins announcing that Shane Bieber and Eury Pérez would need to undergo Tommy John.

Other pitchers from around the league have weighed in on the recent rash of injuries, including the Dodgers' own Shohei Ohtani, who underwent his own UCL surgery last year after Tommy John in 2018. He said, "With the pitch clock, without question, I think the physical burdens are increasing."

However, the pitch clock may not be only thing to blame, if it's the culprit at all. By the time MLB instituted a timer on pitchers, it had already cracked down on foreign substances pitchers would use for better grip, better spin, and so on.

Tyler Glasnow weighed in years ago, and the clip is resurfacing in the wake of Bieber, Strider, and co.'s injuries. He said that after he went "cold turkey" on his "substance of choice" (sunscreen and rosin), he had to change his mechanics considerably in ways that put far more strain on his arm.

Tyler Glasnow's resurfaced argument in favor of sticky stuff is more relevant now than ever before

Glasnow recalled his first start without foreign substances in a game against the Nationals, and recalled that doctors he'd consulted were worried about the effect losing sticky stuff would have on pitchers' bodies. After the start, he said he "woke up the next day and was sore in places [he] didn't even know I had muscles in." Accordingly, he changed his fastball and curveball grip by pushing them further into his hand and placing more strain from his forearm down to his elbow.

Though injury is never a good thing, Glasnow is a more authoritative voice on baseball injuries than most. The rub has always been that he's never thrown more than 120 innings in a season because of a myriad of injuries. Given the show MLB put on about cracking down on substances, it feels boldly optimistic to say that it might take anything Glasnow said into consideration. However, starting pitchers are dropping like flies, so they really might need to.