There were questions of whether or not pitcher Gerrit Cole was feeling the California Love, but it is clear that he had more of an Empire State of Mind. Tonight the 27 time World Series Champs, the New York Yankees have officially signed highly coveted Free Agent, Gerrit Cole for $324 Million for nine years(opt-out clause after 5 years). Cole and Strasburg were the most highly anticipated Free Agents on the market during this off season. The Yankees made it clear from the get go that they wanted Cole on their team. In the end it came between the Dodgers and the Yankees as suitors. Cole had roots in California, so it led some to believe he would go to the west coast. But, money talks and in April we will see him in pinstripes.
The reason teams wanted Cole
Gerrit Cole was one of the best pitchers in the MLB last season. He held an impressive 2.50 ERA, 326 strikeouts, and 20 wins with five losses. He is known for being a great playoff pitcher. One who has very easily shut down the Yankees in the playoffs. With the Yankees struggling with their starting pitching when it came to the playoffs, it was clear from the beginning of the offseason that they would pursue either Cole or Strasburg. Will this be the missing piece that the Yankees need to end their drought of winning a World Series? Only time will tell.
There are still two free agent pitchers out there who are worth signing and tracking through the coming days. Madison Bumgarner is still a pitcher looking for a home next season as well as Hyun-Jin Ryu. Both of these guys would make great starters for teams looking for a home. Free agency is not over and there is plenty of excitement left. But, this is huge news for the Yankees.
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