As the New York Yankees and general manager Brian Cashman initiated a wild goose chase that led them to Southern California, where arguably the best goose in all of baseball resided, the result was precisely what they had hoped. Gerrit Cole, the subsequent name of this goose, was enticed by the Yankees’ efforts in bringing him to the Bronx.
The two bottles of specific wine that tranced Cole and his wife on their anniversary in Florence last year were part of the elaborate equation, smoothing over talks with a bit of sulfite and grapery. However, Cole is a man of ambition and intelligence, two factors that were deciphered after hearing his eloquence at the revealing press conference.
The second of three secret weapons the Bombers used against Cole in their pursuit was former pitcher, Andy Pettite, one of Cole’s childhood figures on the mound. Pettite is a personable man who used his charm to further lure the former Astros ace to New York, but he only carved out a sliver of the credit, a good portion must be attributed to new pitching coach, Matt Blake.
The Yankees hit the nail on the head with Matt Blake:
Blake, who was formerly with the Cleveland Indians, has replaced Larry Rothschild. Big shoes to fill for the young coach, but his analytical approach and benevolence towards progression in modern-day baseball was too appealing to pass up for the Yanks.
Cole, who is a master manipulator of the seams, utilizes new techniques and analytical approaches to improve his abilities, something that Blake can undoubtedly help with, despite this being his first head pitching coach job.
â€œMatt was pretty impressive in the meeting that we had when I first got to know him,â€ Cole said.
Blake has never engaged in a mound visit before, and we can imagine he will get plenty of experience with the Yankees, maybe not as much as if he were heading the Red Sox’s crew, but enough to weather the storm.
â€œIâ€™ve known a couple of pitchers that have come through the Cleveland system and I think any pitcher in the league has probably admired Cleveland from afar,â€ Cole said. â€œThey’re really unique organization, I think, in the sense that over the last 10 years, they haven’t signed a free-agent pitcher starting pitcher.â€
Cleveland has taken an incredible approach towards their pitching, and while the Yankees are a bit more lucrative in their free-agent ways, both systems work. Nonetheless, the knowledge and skill-set that Blake brings with him to New York played a significant part in the landing of Cole on a nine-year, $324 million deal. An excellent start for the 34-year-old coach in Pinstripes.