Personally, I think encouraging Cloth Armor + Health Potions similarly encourages poor gameplay.
This helps turn the lane into a passive lane, similar to starting with a null magic mantle+pots or flask+pots. This turns it into a farm lane, and discourages offensive trades/fights.
This also goes against their philosophy for changing the top of the defensive mastery tree, which was the fact that easily obtained armor/MR discourages offensive lanes, and prevents skilled enemies from killing their opponent (when they should be beat out).
While it also provides a starting item choice option, it also would discourage the use of AD mids if there was too strong/too common of a counter to them... even if it just makes it less fun (a difficult to kill enemy that can't really fight you back with no offensive items).
I think that starting with a Cloth Armor shouldn't be the "go-to" against them, but purchasing a Cloth Armor and being able to make good use of it upon returning to the lane is a good option. You shouldn't simply assume that you will need defense against them, which would be the same as assuming you would always need a null magic mantle when seeing an enemy AP mid.