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American League

Gerrit Cole Taking Off in Houston



The defending World Champion Houston Astros sought to improve themselves this past offseason.  The Astros identified the need to strengthen an already strong starting rotation.  Houston kicked the tires of Yu Darvish among other free agent pitchers.

In Pittsburgh, the Pirates decided to hit the reset button of the current roster.  Gerrit Cole’s name was dangled in the trade market.  The Yankees engaged the Pirates in trade talks for Cole’s services.  The Yankees front office had been a fan of Gerrit Cole’s for quite some time having originally drafted the right-hander in 2008 before Cole opted to head to UCLA.

Media sources reported a deal between Pittsburgh and New York and just as quickly the deal fell through later that day.  Houston then swooped in and traded for Cole to solidify their rotation.  Houston was betting on the young starters upside.

Cole won 19 games in 2015 while posting an impressive 2.60 ERA and punching out 200 plus hitters.  He was an All-Star and finished 4th in the NL Cy Young Voting.  His 2015 campaign showed the baseball world that Gerrit Cole was worthy of his 2011 1st pick status.

The 2016 & 2017 seasons were less memorable for Cole and the Pirates.  Pittsburgh went from 98 wins in 2015 to 78 in 2016 and 75 in 2017.   Cole saw his ERA jump to 3.88 in 2016 and 4.26 in 2017.  Cole became prone to the long ball as he gave up 31 home runs in 2017.

Gerrit Cole needed a change of scenery and the Pirates obliged him.

Gerrit Cole joined an Astros rotation that featured two previous Cy Young Award winners in Justin Verlander and Dallas Keuchel in addition to Lance McCullers and Charlie Morton.

The consensus was that Cole would be the fourth man in the Astros rotation.  This role would be a change for Cole as he was the ace of the Pirates staff for most of his tenure in Pittsburgh.

Cole has taken this role in stride this season.  He endeared himself to the Houston faithful by joining Astros legend Nolan Ryan as the second pitcher in MLB history to strikeout 11 or more hitters in three consecutive starts to begin the season.

Baseball Prospectus

He set a career best last Friday by fanning 14 Texas Rangers.  Cole’s WHIP is a staggering 0.66 and has only issued 4 walks in the early season.

The Astros offense has failed to provided Cole with run support in two of his first three starts, but the wins will surly come for the talented starter.

Gerrit Cole has always had talent, but no one could’ve foreseen this historic start.  Cole regaining his 2015 form can be attributed to a couple factors.

He has the motivation of contributing to a championship team.  Cole doesn’t have the pressure of being the guy in Houston as the Astros won the World Series without him.

Cole is making the rare, smooth transition pitchers have going from the senior to the junior circuit.  Gerrit Cole is dominating early into the 2018 season, and if he continues this pace Houston will be dominating late into October once again.


American League

Yankees’ Luis Severino Alters Diet to Improve Late-Season Energy



New York Yankees pitcher Luis Severino will be entering an important season as he tries to prove that he is a legit ace for a team that bolstered it’s starting rotation this offseason.

And that means a change in his diet.

Severino has altered his diet, cutting a number of snacks, including his favorite twice-fried plantains, out of his diet in an effort to avoid late-season fatigue.

“It’s not easy, it’s tough” Severino said, according to ESPN’s Coley Harvey.

“When you are at the finish line and you feel like you need a little bit more than five days to be ready, you know that something’s going on,” Severino said.

Severino made the decision to change his diet following the Yankees’ Divisional Series lost to World Series Champions the Boston Red Sox.

“Even though I feel like he was certainly healthy, he probably dealt with some fatigue issues with being a young pitcher in this league, and for the second consecutive year kind of getting around that 200-inning standpoint,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said.

“But in a lot of ways, we saw the normal progression of a young star pitcher. And even though he had some struggles in the second half, he had some flashes where he pitched really well for us, righted the ship a little bit.”

Severino still could be the starter on Opening Day.

“I would say there’s a very good chance of that,” Boone said. “We hadn’t had those kind of conversations exactly yet. But my expectation is that he would be that guy.”

Severino noted that the diet change was hard.

“I hate eating vegetables,” Severino said.

Where I came from, we just eat anything we see in the fridge, fried and fast food,” Severino said. “But we’re eating more vegetables and stuff like that, and get your body going faster and then recover fast. So that’s my main stuff, focusing on my workouts and avoiding doing a lot of weights that maybe make me a lot more tired.”

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American League

Yankees Keeping Tabs on Manny Machado



Don’t completely count the New York Yankees out of the Manny Machado sweepstakes just yet, because they are simply playing the waiting game.

According to’s Andy Martino, the Yankees are keeping tabs on Machado with the hopes that a golden opportunity arises.

While they aren’t interested in Machado at shortstop, they would play him at third base and move Miguel Andujar to first base should they be able to haul in Machado.

While nothing is imminent, and even though the report states that a deal is unlikely, there is no counting the Yankees out of it just yet as Spring Training approaches.

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American League

Athletics Sign Brett Anderson



The Oakland Athletics have agreed to terms with left hander Brett Anderson, according to the San Francisco Chronicle’s Susan Slusser.

Anderson is taking a physical on Tuesday.

Anderson pitched to the tune of a 4.48 ERA for the A’s last season.

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