Yankees manager Joe Girardi is concerned about the potential toll the World Baseball Classic could have on pitchers, and has an idea regarding how that can be addressed.
Girardi suggested Tuesday that the first two rounds of the WBC should be pushed back a week, and that the semifinals and championship should be played in the days before the All-Star Game (with the entire league getting those days off).
"You hope that guys don't necessarily have to throw two days in a row this early," Girardi said, according to Dave Lennon of Newsday. "But you get an extra-inning game, and then you can only use so many guys, and it becomes tough."
"Then you have guys that are built up," Girardi continued. "You're not worried about them going two days in a row. I think they're more prepared. Maybe teams think it's more risky, but more Tommy John [surgeries] happen in the month of April than any month. So now you put them in a competitive situation in March, and there's concerns. I think they have a better chance of being hurt in March."
Yankees relievers Dellin Betances (Dominican Republic) and Tyler Clippard (United States) are among those still pitching in the WBC, which concludes with the best-of-three championship, beginning March 20 at Dodger Stadium Los Angeles.