Tuesday night on YES, David Cone was on a roll.
In the fourth inning against the Braves — in another game that challenged the better senses to find something, anything, more sensible — Cone spoke of how he was inspired as a kid by watching Luis Tiant manipulate batters and “improvise” throughout a game.
“I think that’s part of the lost art in pitching, nowadays. You see maximum effort, maximum velocity, starters going fewer innings, and that ‘improv’ allowed you to pitch more innings, give different looks.
“I don’t blame the pitchers, nowadays, they’re just not allowed to go as far as we were allowed to go. If I had 100 pitches after five innings, I had two or three more innings left. I wasn’t done after five; I finished with 130 pitches.”
OK, got it. Good stuff, too. But one question: Why? Why has that changed? That’s the part no one who gets it gets.
It’s not as if such management has reduced injuries. Seems every team’s IL is packed with pitchers far more than ever. So again, why, and to what good end?
But “modern” baseball is loaded with good questions in search of good answers.