Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Cole Cools off Red-Hot Detroit Right-Hander Goes 6-Plus Innings in First Home-Opener Start, Hands Potent Tigers First Defeat Pirates 5, Tigers 4

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Cole Cools off Red-Hot Detroit Right-Hander Goes 6-Plus Innings in First Home-Opener Start, Hands Potent Tigers First Defeat Pirates 5, Tigers 4

Article excerpt

Several members of the media stood along the wall of the PNC Park news conference room, space being tighter than usual after Monday's home opener. Tucked behind them in the corner, almost out of sight, was Gerrit Cole, waiting for his turn to speak. There was not much he could say, though, to add to his earlier performance.

Cole's six-plus strong innings and the offense's three home runs helped the Pirates beat the previously undefeated Detroit Tigers, 5- 4. The regular-season PNC Park record crowd of 39,933 watched the Pirates turn two timely double plays and hold on for a victory after Mark Melancon almost surrendered the lead in the ninth inning.

Cole (1-0) allowed only two base-runners in his first six innings of work, a Nick Castellanos single in the second and an Alex Avila walk in the fifth.

He struck out four consecutive batters between the third and fourth innings and finished with eight on the day. He did this against a lineup that led the majors in runs, batting average, on- base percentage and slugging percentage after a 6-0 start.

"That's a lineup that's playing as big as any lineup in the major leagues right now," manager Clint Hurdle said. "The fastball command makes [Cole] dynamic because then the other pitches just play."

With Cole still pitching, Miguel Cabrera singled in the seventh, and after a close two-strike call, J.D. Martinez walked. Yoenis Cespedes served a slider into left field to load the bases with no outs.

"There were a couple calls that we felt we didn't get," Hurdle said. "There might have been some that they felt they didn't get as well, but you play the game."

Said Cole: "Once the ball leaves your hand, it's out of your control."

Needing a ground ball for a double play, Hurdle called for sinkerballer Jared Hughes, and the move worked perfectly: Castellanos grounded into a 6-4-3 double play on the first pitch he saw. One run scored, but Hughes got Avila to pop out and end the inning. In six-plus innings, Cole allowed the one run, three hits and two walks. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.