The Pirates Need To Shut Down Gerrit Cole For The Rest Of 2016
Gerrit Cole returned from the disabled list on Monday night. However, his start went disastrously. The Pirates should shut Cole down for the remainder of the season.
Gerrit Cole was placed on the disabled list on August 25th with elbow inflammation. The four starts prior to these were the four worst starts of Cole’s Major League career. In these four starts he posted a 7.09 ERA and a 4.39 FIP.
The Pirates were hopeful that giving Gerrit Cole a few weeks off would help to fix his woes. Unfortunately, that does not appear to be the case. Because in his return against the Philadelphia Phillies last night Cole was not good at all.
Gerrit Cole had a strict pitch count on Monday night. While manager Clint Hurdle did not reveal what the pitch count was before the game, odds are Cole was not going to pitch deep into the game regardless. Unfortunately, the reason Cole did not go deep had nothing to do with his pitch count.
In Monday night’s game Cole held the Phillies scoreless in the first inning. This was thanks to Francisco Cervelli throwing out a base runner. However, Cole also recorded a pair of strikeouts in the first inning.
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The second inning would be much different though. Gerrit Cole wound up allowing five runs in the bottom of the second inning. Due to this, Cole only lasted two innings on Monday night.
Gerrit Cole’s final line on Monday night was ugly. In two innings pitched Cole allowed five runs on four hits, four walks, and a home run. Not only were Cole’s results bad, but he also did not look like himself on the mound.
While Cole’s velocity was closer to his usual velocity than it was in his last few starts before going on the disabled list, there were still red flags. Cole’s pitches seemed very flat which was a problem he had during the month of August. Furthermore, his control was maybe as bad as I have ever seen during his Major League career.
To me, Cole looked like a pitcher that is still not completely healthy. If this is the case then him continuing to make starts does nothing but hurt both himself and the Pirates. And it hurts both of them not just now, but also down the road.
The 2017 Pittsburgh Pirates have the potential to be one of the best teams in the National League. If they are going to do this they need a healthy Gerrit Cole anchoring the pitching rotation. Due to this, in my opinion, the Pirates should shut down Cole for the remainder of the 2016 season.