Globe iconLogin iconRecap iconSearch iconTickets icon

Lucas Giolito explains the pre-game ritual that makes it look like he was abducted by aliens

Baseball players do a lot of strange things to prepare to play in Major League games. A notoriously superstitious bunch, big leaguers often develop bizarre routines based on certain meals, how they put on a uniform, or a specific kind of workout. Some of these routines are more standard across the game than others, but that doesn't make them any less unusual to an outside observer.
In the case of White Sox pitcher Lucas Giolito, an important between-start routine is something known as cupping therapy. Cupping was first brought to the mainstream during the 2016 Summer Olympics when swimmers like Michael Phelps were spotted with large red circles all over their bodies. Cupping has since become a training method in other sports, including baseball, and players like Giolito have taken a liking to the practice -- with the knowledge that the huge dark circles on their skin are a bit odd to the naked eye.
Check out the video at the top of the page to hear Giolito explain what cupping does for him, as well as his other baseball rituals, which include eating a banana during the fourth inning of every start.

We also talked to Giolito about the pros and cons of being especially tall. At 6-foot-6, Giolito is one of the tallest pitchers in the Major Leagues. But we wanted to know how his height affects his life off the field. Giolito knew exactly what his height has been good and bad for: