The seeming uptick in pitcher injuries is one of the leading early-season subplots in Major League Baseball. Already we've seen teams hit by a slew of arm injuries to high-profile hurlers like Shane Beiber of the Guardians, Spencer Strider of the Braves, and Eury Pérez of the Marlins

This recently led to a round of dueling media releases from the Players Association and the league. Union head Tony Clark suggested in his statement that the implementation of the pitch clock is to blame. While the purpose of the pitch clock is to shorten game times and improve pace of the play, one consequence is that pitchers have less time to rest between pitches. The thinking goes that such mounting fatigue could exact a price in terms of arm health. The league, however, responded to those claims by stating that the best available evidence suggests the pitch clock is not playing a role in increased injuries to pitchers. 

This brings us to New York Yankees ace and reigning American League Cy Young winner Gerrit Cole. Cole is working his way back from elbow problems of his own, and he was recently asked about the jousting between the league and the union over an issue that is quite obviously very important to him. Via the Associated Press, Cole said: 

"I'm just frustrated it's a combative issue. It's like, OK, we have divorced parents and the child's misbehaving and we can't get on the same page to get the child to behave, not that the players are misbehaving, but we have an issue here and we need to get on the same page to at least try and fix it.

"Rob [Manfred, MLB commissioner] cares about the players. He's supposed to care about players, he's supposed to really deeply care about them, like that is his job. I don't know if he wrote that statement, I don't know who wrote that statement, but did anyone put a name on it? At least Tony [Clark] did."

As for what's underpinning the rise in arm troubles, the likeliest main culprit figures to be the steady increase in pitch velocity over the years. Three-time Cy Young winner Justin Verlander, who's recovering from shoulder inflammation, is of that opinion, and he's hardly alone. Perhaps MLB's ongoing study on the current state of pitcher health will yield some strong evidence and possible measures to address what's happening. Until then, though, frustration will persist.