The sample size was small, but so far the Yankees’ $324 million man is living up to the hype.
Gerrit Cole made his Yankees Grapefruit League debut Monday, and pitched a scoreless first inning against the the Pirates at George M. Steinbrenner Field.
Cole, who was signed by the Yankees to a historic nine-year deal this offseason, had two strikeouts and a walk on 20 pitches, 12 of which were strikes.
His first strikeout came off of a Bryan Reynolds’ swing-and-miss.
The 29-year-old already seemed in midseason form, with his fastball touching 97-98 mph in the outing. In 2019, Cole was 20-5 with a 2.50 ERA for the Astros.
He was removed, as expected, after one inning of work, and was replaced by Jordan Montgomery.
The Yankees’ plan is for Cole to slowly ramp up to the regular season, where he is slated to be the opening day starter.