New York Yankees can remain confident in starting pitching unit despite Paxton injury

New York Yankees, Gerrit Cole
Dec 18, 2019; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Yankees pitcher Gerrit Cole speaks during a press conference at Legends Club at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran-USA TODAY Sports

All New York Yankees fans have been screaming for a big-time pitcher to sign with the team for years now, and that request was fulfilled with the signing of free agent, formerly of the Houston Astros, Gerrit Cole. About time!

The former, “could have been a player for the Yankees,” out of high school, as he was selected then in the first round draft by the Bombers, opted to go to college and played for UCLA.

He was then selected as the first overall player in the 2011 draft by the Pittsburgh Pirates. He made his MLB debut in 2013 and was named NL Rookie of the Month in September of that year, and NL pitcher of the year in April of 2015.

Cole was traded to the Houston Astros in the 2017-2018 off-season. He spent two years there and showed his interest in moving on by rejecting a qualifying offer extended from the Astros.

Enter the New York Yankees. Seeking an ace for the staff, and realizing that the career 24.0 WAR, 3.22 ERA, 1336 strike-out, and 94-52 record right pitcher was available, it was inevitable that a deal was struck between the two parties.

So Gerritt Cole, husband of Amy Crawford, former UCLA softball player and sister of SF Giants shortstop, Brandon became a Yankee, inked a record-setting nine-year, $324 million deal for a major league pitcher. How would he react?

At the press conference, when Gerrit was announced as the next Yankee ace, he produced a faded sign that had the words, “YANKEE FAN TODAY, TOMORROW AND FOREVER,” which he proudly displayed at a 2001 World Series game in the Bronx. His father, originally from Syracuse, NY, imparted his love of the Yankees on his son.

He also appeared at the press conference clean-shaven, according to Yankee protocol, upon which seeing the previously bearded man, Yankee manager Aaron Boone said,” he cleans up nice, doesn’t he?” To which Gerrit responded, “I’ve experienced razor burn for the first time.” Obviously, he has a sense of humor and a mean fastball.

Gerrit and his wife are expecting their first child, a son, in June. Welcome to the Yankee family to your entire family! Can’t wait to see you, Gerrit, officially in Pinstripes! And keep shaving! It really doesn’t hurt that much. And winning games and pennants, well…