The Yankees finally got their man.
Hal Steinbrenner cracked open the checkbook and the Yankees won the bidding war for 29-year-old ace Gerrit Cole with a nine-year, $324 million contract at the winter meetings late Tuesday night, according to multiple reports.
Cole immediately jumps to the top of a Yankees rotation that also includes James Paxton, Masahiro Tanaka and Luis Severino.
Cole cemented himself as one of the best pitchers in baseball in his two seasons with the Astros, going 35-10 with a 2.68 ERA. He spent the first five seasons of his career with the Pirates before the Astros outbid the Yankees to acquire him in a trade. The Yankees first missed out on Cole in 2008 after they drafted him in the first round, as he instead opted to go to UCLA.
The momentum for the California native swung after the Yankees met with him and agent Scott Boras last week, with The Post reporting that he would not be favoring the Angels and Dodgers – the Yankees’ chief competition – because of location.
And now he will put on the pinstripes as the possible final piece for a team that has lost to in the ALDS or ALCS the past three seasons and has not won a World Series since…