Skip to content

Yu Darvish thinks major league teams should go with a six-man rotation

Jul 22, 2014, 10:00 AM EDT

darvish rangers getty Getty Images

The New York Times reports on Yu  Darvish’s comments to the Japanese media last week about arm injuries and stuff. Upshot: he’s all for a six-man rotation:

. . . Darvish said he believed that a shift to a six-man rotation by major league teams could significantly reduce the stress on all those elbow ligaments by giving pitchers a critical extra day to rest and limiting their starts . . . Speaking to Japanese reporters in Minneapolis last week, he said, “If you really want to protect players, we should add one more spot to the starting rotation.”

He got some backup from teammate Colby Lewis who spent two years in Japan and was used to the once-a-week pitching schedule (Japanese teams play six days a week and have six-man rotations).

Eh. Could it reduce pitcher injuries? It’s possible. There is some, albeit no definitive evidence that elbow injuries are less frequent in Japan. But there are also tradeoffs in terms of (a) giving less effective pitchers more innings; and (b) requiring teams to devote yet another roster spot to a pitcher. This in an age when teams are already frequently playing games with only two position players on the bench plus a backup catcher they won’t use unless they’re forced to. Sure, ideally you’d think teams would get rid of a reliever for an extra starter, but when was the last time a manager gave up a reliever even when it made sense? Heck, they’d sooner play infielders in the outfield than get rid of that 13 or 14-man pitching staff/security blanket.

There would have to be major roster rules changes to accompany such a thing, as they have in Japan. There rosters are 28-men deep instead of 25 and a couple of players are activated/deactivated on a game-by-game basis. If you do that here maybe it helps, but it still doesn’t solve the problem of using a guy who, today, couldn’t crack your rotation as a once-a-week starter.

If the injury/start frequency evidence got more definitive, sure, you do what you do in order to save your resources. But until then it’s a pretty tall cost to go with a six-man rotation on the regs.

Latest Posts
  1. Joe Girardi and Joe Maddon at odds after Jeter was hit by a pitch last night

    Sep 17, 2014, 9:13 AM EDT

    Joe Girardi Getty Images

    Rays pitchers have hit Yankees batters five times in the past week. Joe Girardi is sick of it.

  2. Umpire ejects jackwagon fan heckling Bryce Harper in Atlanta last night

    Sep 17, 2014, 8:31 AM EDT

    Bryce Harper Getty Getty Images

    And the Braves and their announcers bear some of the blame for this baloney.

  3. And That Happened: Tuesday’s scores and highlights

    Sep 17, 2014, 7:08 AM EDT

    Washington Nationals Celebrate AP

    Beer showers on the Beltway as the Nats and Orioles both clinch

  4. Buck Showalter gets booze shower after AL East clincher

    Sep 17, 2014, 12:34 AM EDT

    showalter getty Getty Images

    CSNBaltimore.com has some exclusive video of Orioles manager Buck Showalter getting showered with beer and champagne after his club clinched the American League East title on Tuesday night …

  5. Bryce Harper rocks custom D.C. Fire Department helmet during NL East title celebration

    Sep 17, 2014, 12:07 AM EDT

    1harper

    Bryce Harper came prepared for the Nationals’ division title celebration with a custom helmet sent to him from the Washington, D.C. Fire Department. These photos come courtesy of CSNWashington.com …

  6. Jose Altuve breaks Craig Biggio’s franchise record, tallying his 211th hit of the season

    Sep 16, 2014, 11:41 PM EDT

    jose altuve getty Getty Images

    Watch as Astros second baseman Jose Altuve sets the franchise record for most hits in a season with a single through the middle of the infield on Tuesday night at Minute Maid Park in Houston …

  7. Video: O’s make final out to clinch first American League East championship since 1997

    Sep 16, 2014, 10:53 PM EDT

    steve pearce o's getty Getty Images

    Watch the Orioles make the final out of Tuesday night’s AL East title clincher …

  8. Tanner Roark dominates as Nationals clinch NL East

    Sep 16, 2014, 10:05 PM EDT

    tanner roark getty Getty Images

    Congratulations to the Washington Nationals, who’ve clinched their second NL East crown in three years.

  9. Rays’ retirement gifts for Derek Jeter: Don Zimmer jersey and a pinstriped 16-foot kayak

    Sep 16, 2014, 9:49 PM EDT

    jeter getty Getty Images

    Derek Jeter’s retirement tour continued on Tuesday night at Tropicana Field with another set of cool gifts. Along with a $16,000 check for his Turn 2 Foundation and a framed Don Zimmer jersey presented by the widow of the former Yankees bench coach, Jeter also got this custom 16-foot pinstriped kayak …

  10. Hanley Ramirez scratched Tuesday with elbow strain

    Sep 16, 2014, 9:04 PM EDT

    hanley ramirez getty Getty Images

    Dodgers shortstop Hanley Ramirez has been scratched from Tuesday’s game against the Rockies due to an elbow strain. It’s not clear when he suffered the injury or how serious it might be.

  11. Juan Lagares leaves game with hyper-extended elbow

    Sep 16, 2014, 8:40 PM EDT

    Juan Lagares AP

    Lagares has dramatically out-performed expectations offensively this season, hitting .283 with four homers and a .706 OPS in 115 games, and his defense in center field has always been Gold Glove caliber.

  12. Rusney Castillo will make his Red Sox debut Wednesday

    Sep 16, 2014, 8:20 PM EDT

    rusney castillo ap AP

    Castillo played a total of 10 games in the minors, participating in the playoffs at three different levels while hitting a combined .297 with four doubles and two steals.

  13. Tony Gwynn Jr. batting leadoff for Phillies in San Diego

    Sep 16, 2014, 8:02 PM EDT

    tony gwnn jr. getty Getty Images

    Tony Gwynn Jr. is batting leadoff for the Phillies on Tuesday night in San Diego. It’ll be his first appearance in his hometown since the death of his Hall of Fame father.

  14. Matt Shoemaker diagnosed with mild oblique strain

    Sep 16, 2014, 7:37 PM EDT

    matt shoemaker getty Getty Images

    Angels right-hander Matt Shoemaker departed his sensational start Monday night against the Mariners after experiencing discomfort on the left side of his rib cage in the top of the eighth inning. He underwent an MRI on Tuesday and the diagnosis is in …

  15. Bryce Harper is back in the Nationals’ lineup after leaving game with lightheadedness

    Sep 16, 2014, 7:10 PM EDT

    Bryce Harper AP AP

    Nate Schierholtz, who replaced Harper mid-game Monday, will be on stand-by again with the Nationals able to clinch the NL East division title tonight.

  16. Nolan Arenado diagnosed with pneumonia

    Sep 16, 2014, 6:53 PM EDT

    nolan arenado getty Getty Images

    Rockies trainer Keith Dugger told Nick Groke of the Denver Post on Tuesday evening that third baseman Nolan Arenado has been diagnosed with pneumonia and is at home resting while Colorado continues a three-game series against the Dodgers.

  17. Shin-Soo Choo adds ankle surgery to elbow surgery

    Sep 16, 2014, 6:28 PM EDT

    Shin-Soo Choo AP AP

    Choo’s ankle apparently bothered him for most of the season, which helps explain why he hit just .242 with 13 homers and a .714 OPS in the first year of a seven-year, $130 million contract.

  18. Josh Hamilton returns to Angels’ lineup after sitting out 10 games with shoulder injury

    Sep 16, 2014, 6:11 PM EDT

    hamilton getty Getty Images

    Josh Hamilton is in the Angels’ starting lineup on Tuesday night against the Mariners for the first time in 10 games, batting sixth and serving as the club’s designated hitter. Hamilton had been sidelined since September 4 with a left shoulder injury.

Featured video

Do the Angels have any weaknesses?
Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. G. Stanton (3820)
  2. A. Rizzo (2509)
  3. R. Castillo (2469)
  4. B. Belt (2205)
  5. A. Pujols (2146)
  1. H. Ryu (2054)
  2. C. Young (2024)
  3. J. Hamilton (1963)
  4. C. Davis (1862)
  5. E. Gattis (1827)