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A's May considered retiring due to anxiety, says pitch clock made it worse

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Oakland Athletics right-hander Trevor May contemplated retirement due to his anxiety, which was worsened by baseball's new pitch clock.

"I thought about it," May told Jason Mastrodonato of The Mercury News.

May said the pitch clock caused anxiety because he didn't have enough time to employ the same breathing and readiness techniques he used to rely upon in previous seasons.

"Before, I had this big strong dude, a guard, and anxiety was trying to get in the doorway, and the guard wouldn't let it," May said.

"Now that anxiety is quick. The guard is too slow. The anxiety is just getting in there."

May admitted the pitch clock was only one factor contributing to his anxiety. The 33-year-old is also being weighed down by family matters, with people close to him going through tough times, according to Mastrodonato.

The reliever was placed on the 15-day injured list with issues related to anxiety one day after allowing three earned runs in 1/3 of an inning to the Chicago Cubs on April 18.

Following that outing, May's ERA ballooned to 12.00 to go along with nine walks in six innings. Before this season, his ERA was 3.65, and his BB/9 was 3.20.

The hurler joined Daniel Bard and Austin Meadows as players to be placed on the IL this season with anxiety-related issues.

May is unsure when he'll pitch again, but he's working on new ways to develop confidence with A's sports psychologist Ben Strack, who he says saved his career and convinced him not to retire.

Oakland signed May to a one-year, $7-million contract in December.

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