— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) January 10, 2018
However, Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports is calling the report a false rumor.
Source: "No deal" for Gerrit Cole to Houston. "False rumor."
As is the case with these things, talks could pick back up quickly. For now, though, Gerrit Cole to Houston is not happening.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) January 10, 2018
Conflicting Reports on Gerrit Cole Trade to Houston Astros
Cole, 27, played 33 games for the Pirates last season. He made a career-high 33 starts, logging a 4.26 ERA, 8.7 K/9, 2.9 BB/9, and a 101 ERA+. The long ball hurt Cole in 2017, as he managed a 1.4 HR/9 over a 8.8 H/9. Cole allowed 31 home runs in total, which is a career high for the 27-year-old. However, Cole also racked up nearly 200 strikeouts, finishing with 196 in 203 innings. This is Cole’s second 200-inning season; his first came in 2015, when he recorded 208 innings and became an All-Star, as well. Since joining the Pirates in 2013, Cole has established himself as the ace of their rotation.
Cole has spent four seasons in the majors, all with the Pirates. He has a career 59-42 record, with a 3.50 ERA. Cole has notched 734 strikeouts in 782.1 innings.
The New York Yankees drafted Cole as their 28th pick in the 2008 June Amateur draft after Cole came out of Orange Lutheran High School. He would later go first overall of the 2011 Amateur draft to the Pirates, coming out of the University of California Los Angeles. Cole made his debut for Pittsburgh in 2013 against the San Francisco Giants. In Cole’s debut, he went 6.1 innings, allowed seven hits and two walks, and only surrendered two earned runs in a winning effort.
Any team looking for a horse in their rotation should look at acquiring Cole. Cole has had two 200-inning seasons and is able to keep a ball club in the game. While he has a history of injuries in prior seasons, he can strike out a high volume of batters. While Cole normally limits his walks, he did give up 55 free passes last season. He is coming off a season in which he got hit around a bit, including giving up more than one home run per game. Next season, he will need to focus on maintaining his control.
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