Skip to content
It’s time for Gerrit Cole to start throwing like an ace – The Denver Post

The Yankees paid Gerrit Cole $324 million to be one of those guys. Only he isn’t, at least not so far.

Cole is a big guy and obviously has a big arm. He flashed when he reminded you of Buck Showalter’s definition of an ace: “You know one when you see one.” But how many times do you really feel like that when you see Cole, who’s already had five starts this year when he allowed five runs, and another game in Detroit on a cold night where he didn’t make the second inning ?

It’s not entirely Cole’s fault that he hasn’t been the kind of game changer his former Houston teammate Justin Verlander continues to be. Cole showed a lot of heart and arms the night the Yankees lost Game 5 to the Rays of 2020, at the end of that short season. But when Cole was again called upon to win the kind of game he was hired for, against the Red Sox in last October’s Wild Card game at Fenway, he failed to make it out of the third inning.

To be sure, no one writes it off, that would be crazy. He’s going to be there for a very long time. But from what we’ve seen so far, he’s not the Yankees’ ace. CC Sabathia was back in 2009, the last time the Yankees won it all. He’s not Game 6 Verlander pitched against the Yankees in the 2017 American League Championship Series.

There will be more chances for Cole in October, as the Yankees, despite looking as wobbly as they have in the last 30 games – that’s a lot – are going to win the AL East. So when Cole receives the ball on his first playoff start this time, he will receive it at the stadium.

But let’s say it’s him against Verlander with all the money on the table in another ALCS Astros-Yankees showdown. Who would be you put your money?

You already know the answer to that one.

Do you know who Cole has been in stripes so far? He’s been a better Masahiro Tanaka, who the Yankees once paid half the money they paid Cole, but was brought to the stadium to be exactly that kind of game changer.

This week, the Yankees had a chance to win a series against the Mariners, a team they may have to face in the playoffs, and whose own Game 1 playoff starter will be Luis Castillo, whom the Yankees coveted, and powerfully, at the trade deadline. (and why did they? Because Brian Cashman, and stop me if you’ve heard this one, doesn’t think he has enough starting pitch). Cole got the ball back. It was 6-0, Seattle, after the start of the first. It was the second time this season that Cole had given up three homers in one inning.

“There were bad pitch selections,” Cole said. “There were bad throws and we were still punished for that.”

When you look at Cole’s season, you see that a quarter of his starts went like this, when he and the Yankees were sunk by a bad run. But guess what? Those bad runs matter. The good news, if there is one? In what were six hefty-bag starts for their ace, the Yankees only lost two of those games, because the Yankees battled bad pitches and poor pitching selections from Cole. But you know when they couldn’t? In this Wild Card game against the Red Sox.

There are so many more seasons to play. So much more chances for Cole in big spots, maybe even when the Mets come to Yankee Stadium. It’s not that he’s having a bad year. He’s just not having a good year; not having a $324 million year. Is it unfair to judge him on his contract? No, this is not the case. You are what your record says you are on payday. His record so far is 9-4 this season, with a 3.56 ERA, on what is still one of the best teams in the sport this season.

Here’s what Seattle manager Scott Servais had to say about Cole’s opponent Castillo last Wednesday afternoon:

“I thought he was brilliant. I couldn’t be more excited about what he’s going to bring to our ball club, stability, getting the ball every five days and confidence and all that.

And here’s what Aaron Boone had to say about Cole’s first six run inning:

“Just a tough round where he was struggling to find his control and rhythm and get all of his pitches. Unfortunately, we’re behind the eighth ball there and then pitched really well from there.

Again: August is fine. It doesn’t work like that in October. My barely alarmist Yankees fan PC friend emailed me this after the Seattle game:

“Would you be shocked if Cole started throwing them in Game 1 of an ALDS?”

Cole is still only 31, set to turn 32 in September, which is six years younger than the Mets’ Mr. Scherzer, who absolutely showed you what one of those guys looks like in the Game 1 between the Mets and Yankees last week. Cole has the arm to go out in a big game and throw like someone like Josh Beckett did against the Yankees in Game 6 of the 2003 World Series, Yankees vs. Marlins, when Beckett basically said, “There you go. , see if you can hit it.

Nobody writes off Gerrit Cole, not with his talent. He showed flashes of genius and, at his best, seemed capable of knocking the world down.

Again: he has a lot of season left, as he has a lot of his contract left with the Yankees. He’s not only talented, he’s still responsible, and that matters in the big city, more than a little. He’s going to have a lot of chances to be one of those guys, to be what Scherzer so clearly is across town. But to paraphrase an old line from the late great George Young, it’s time for the Yankees ace to start playing.


Here is another email I once received from my friend Vin Scully, from a collection of emails that I will always treasure now that he is gone.

I asked him to compare the experience of fans coming to experience the Shohei Ohtani experience to how fans once flocked to Dodger Stadium to watch Fernando Mania with Mr. Valenzuela:


As always, you watch his words and hear them immediately, in the most unforgettable baseball voice of all.

Daniel Vogelbach: Popular aspiring baseball hero.

Is Kevin Durant already happy?

I’ll just keep asking until I’m sure he is.

Much of Tuesday night’s election results, especially in places like Arizona and Michigan, looked like the Bottom Feeders’ ball.

So wait, these Yankees might not be the Yankees of 27?

Or the 98 Yankees?

Hey, we’re kidding because we love each other.

Good kind of.

So now these Blood Money Tour scammers want their blood money and they want to make the FedEx Playoffs?

It doesn’t work that way.

Or at least it shouldn’t.

It should be noted that Phil Mickelson lent his name to the lawsuit filed by the scammers against the PGA Tour.

It’s just one more event to further alienate Mickelson from the goodwill and even love he generated after winning the PGA at the age of 50.

One more thing about the Saudi tour, which has about as much drama as your country club guest-member:

Name a single player whose best golf is in front of him.

Pretty quiet on the Daniel Jones front so far in Giants training camp.

Too quiet?

I’m going to remind anyone who thinks the Mets didn’t do enough at the trade deadline to remember that when the Red Sox won it all in 2004, here are the two players they picked on the date limit :

Orlando Cabrera.

Doug Mientkiewicz.

I know what the rules say about tampering, but it doesn’t make sense that the tampers in this case – the dolphins – get cut the way they do and the tampered one – Tom Brady – walks away without a scratch.

It’s usually hard to side with the National Football League on almost anything, but Roger Goodell is on the right side of the league’s appeal of Deshaun Watson’s suspension.

Just because a judge gave Watson a soft place to land doesn’t mean she was right.

She was not.

Wide receiver Calvin Ridley gets an entire season due for $1,500 in legal bets on games he wasn’t involved in, and Watson gets six games for inappropriate conduct with more than two dozen masseuses.


This is not a fair judgment.

It’s a pillow fight.

Watson is expected to go there for the entire season.


My friend Stanton wants to know something: If you think Watson gets that kind of pass, at least for now, what about the pass Washington owner Daniel Snyder keeps getting ?

Finally today:

My parents are celebrating their 72nd wedding anniversary this Friday.

It is a number that fits both of them perfectly, signifying a miracle and a blessing worth celebrating, for a great married life that began in 1950.



Not all news on the site expresses the point of view of the site, but we transmit this news automatically and translate it through programmatic technology on the site and not from a human editor.