Making his second start of the spring, Yu Darvish walked four batters on his way to giving up two runs in three innings against the Indians on Tuesday.
Darvish started the game with back-to-back walks, only to have both Michael Brantley and Asdrubal Cabrera get thrown out attempting steals of second base. A better second inning followed, but Darvish gave up a two-run single to Lou Marson and then two more walks in the third inning.
The plan was for Darvish to throw about 50 pitches in the game, but he ended up at 61, as manager Ron Washington allowed him to finish the third inning. Travis Hafner flied to the warning track with two on to end the frame.
In all 29 of his 61 pitches were balls, according to Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News.
Darvish will make his next start on March 19 against the Brewers.
ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reports that talks between Major League Baseball and the MLB Players’ Association concerning pace of play changes have stalled, which makes it more likely that commissioner Rob Manfred unilaterally implements the changes he seeks. Those changes include a pitch clock and a restriction on catcher mound visits.
Manfred said, “My preferred path is a negotiated agreement with the players. But if we can’t get an agreement, we are going to have rule changes in 2018, one way or the other.”
The players have made several suggestions aimed at reducing the length of games, such as amending replay review rules, strictly monitoring down time between innings, and bringing back bullpen carts.
It is believed that MLB is proposing a pitch clock of 20 seconds. If a pitcher takes too long between pitches, he will have a ball added to the count. If the hitter takes too long, then he will have a strike added to the count.