SEE IT: Gerrit Cole Strikes Out 2 In Yankees' Spring Training Debut

Appeared In 1 Inning On Monday

Alec Gearty
February 24, 2020 - 8:03 pm

Yankees ace Gerrit Cole walked out to a boisterous crowd at George M. Steinbrenner Field on Monday. 

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Cole, New York's prized free agent acquisition, made his spring training debut as a member of the Yankees. Cole's 326 strikeouts led American League pitchers last season and maintained the trend with his new team.

The 29-year-old struck out two batters through one inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates. 

"It was exciting," Cole told YES Network. "I had fun. We executed a lot of good pitches. Got to get in some game-speed environments with my teammates, Gary specifically. That kind of stuff is fun."

Pirates outfielder Bryan Reynolds struck out swinging for Cole's first strikeout in the first inning. Cole surrendered a full-count walk to Cole Tucker, but he needed only three pitches to strike out Pirates slugger Josh Bell. According to The Athletic's Lindsay Adler, Cole reached 98 mph on the radar gun. 

Cole worked through the first inning on 20 pitches, according to WFAN's Sweeny Murti. The brief appearance would be the only inning of work Cole received in the exhibition. Jordan Montgomery would replace Cole on the mound. 

"I'll have my regular routine essentially from here on out," Cole said. "So (I'll) just be perfecting and honing in the process and just trying to get ready for the season from that aspect."

Cole signed a nine-year; $324 million deal with New York during the offseason. He tallied 20 wins with a 2.50 ERA in Houston last season. Cole's dominance on the mound resulted in a second-place finish in the AL Cy Young Award race, receiving 13-of-30 first place votes.