Contrary to earlier reports saying a deal between the Houston Astros and Pittsburgh Pirates for Gerrit Cole was done, Jeff Passan of Yahoo says there is no trade. A source told him it was a false rumor.
“As is the case with these things, talks could pick back up quickly,” Passan said. “For now, though, Gerrit Cole to Houston is not happening.”
We here at MMO will keep you up to date with whatever happens next in the situation between Houston and Cole.
Original report – Jan. 10, 12:30 p.m.
The reigning World Series champions have made a move to significantly bolster their starting rotation.
According to Jon Morosi of MLB Network, the Houston Astros have struck a deal to acquire right-hander Gerrit Cole from the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Cole, 27, is coming off arguably the worst season of his career in which he posted a 4.26 ERA, 4.08 FIP, 1.25 WHIP and had a 1.4 HR/9. Though he did prove his health while making 33 starts and throwing 203 innings.
Perhaps the best season of the 27-year-old’s career came back in 2015 when he went 19-8 with a 2.60 ERA, 3.23 FIP, 1.091 WHIP and 99 ERA+ over 208.0 innings. He also appeared in that year’s All-Star game.
On Monday, Astros owner Jim Crane said the team is actively pursuing a high-end starting pitcher and it looks like that has finally come to fruition.
“We don’t have anything done yet, and it may not come to be, but we are constantly looking to improve the team,” he said. “It would have to be a significant upgrade. We’re happy where we are at. I’ve been told we have the best team in baseball on paper, but paper doesn’t win titles.”
Cole is arbitration eligible for the second time this offseason and is under team control for three seasons. The deadline to file for arbitration is Friday, so the Astros reportedly wanted to get a deal done so they could file at their own number instead of inheriting the Pirates number.