Astros trade for Pirates ace Gerrit Cole – SFGate
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The Houston Astros already had two Cy Young winners. They’re hoping Gerrit Cole can make it three.
The World Series champs boosted their rotation with another big arm, acquiring Cole from the Pittsburgh Pirates in a five-player trade Saturday. The Pirates got right-handers Joe Musgrove and Michael Feliz, third baseman Colin Moran and outfielder Jason Martin for their 27-year-old ace.
Cole went 12-12 with a 4.26 ERA last season, by far the worst ERA of his five-year career. The No. 1 overall pick in the 2011 draft was an All-Star in 2015 but hasn’t replicated those results the past two seasons. Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow thinks pitching coach Brent Strom can help Cole recapture that form.
“We expect him to bounce back and be a Cy Young contender,” Luhnow said.
In 2017, Cole tied for the NL lead with 33 starts, was third in innings (203) and 10th in strikeouts (196). He is 59-42 with a 3.50 ERA in five seasons, including 19-8 in 2015.
On Friday, Cole and the Pirates reached agreement on a one-year contract worth $6.75 million. He had one year of arbitration remaining and was likely to command a huge raise in 2019, one of the reasons the Pirates had considered trading him.
Musgrove could take over Cole’s spot in the rotation. The 25-year-old has made 25 starts and 49 appearances with Houston over the past two seasons. He’s 11-12 with a 4.77 ERA in that time, but finished out 2017 by posting a 1.44 ERA over 311/3 innings of relief.
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•The Mets and former Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez have agreed to a deal, pending a physical, USA Today reported. Gonzalez, 35 and a five-time All-Star, was released by the Braves after being traded from the Dodgers.
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