How pitchers are preparing for Year 2 of the pitch clock

Scott Taetsch/USA TODAY Sports

Last year, Aaron Boone's opening spring training talk with his players in the New York Yankees' camp was built around Major League Baseball's implementation of the pitch clock. "It was everything," Boone said recently. His theme was about adaptation, about preparing for the change, about embracing the challenge rather than complaining about it.

In Boone's inaugural address this year, he said, the subject of the pitch clock never came up. Not once. Because the players seem to have quickly evolved, adjusted old habits and moved on.

The pitch clock still generates its fair share of headlines. Tony Clark, the union chief, complained last week about the reduction of time from 20 seconds to 18 seconds when there are runners on base, suggesting that there should have been more conversation and more consideration. In the first exhibition of this spring, San Diego Padres superstar prospect Ethan Salas was called out on a pitch clock violation.

But in a sport that has been long resistant to change, and despite the monumental shift the pitch clock required -- akin to the advent of the shot clock and the 3-point shot in the NBA, and the change in forward pass rules in the NFL -- the incorporation has been mostly seamless.