Originally written on Pirates Prospects  |  Last updated 6/11/13
Gerrit Cole steps into the box for his first Major League at-bat with the bases loaded. Two-time Cy Young winner Tim Lincecum is 60 feet, 6 inches away. After two straight strikes, Cole lays off three pitches out of the zone. Then Lincecum throws a fastball at Cole’s elbows. Cole threw 59 of his 81 pitches for strikes in his quality start. Cole taps his left foot and smacks the pitch into the gap in left-center. If Gregor Blanco does not cut it off, it’s a bases-clearing double. Instead, Cole’s first base hit since his days for the Orange Lutheran High School Lancers is a two-run single to put his new team ahead for good in an 8-2 win Tuesday night. The Pirates’ top prospect outperformed Lincecum (4.2 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 4 K) in every part of his PNC Park debut. Cole kept the Giants scoreless through six innings until he gave up three hits and allowed two runs in the 7th. Of his 81 total pitches, 65 were fastballs and 46 of those fastballs were thrown for strikes. At his best, Cole retired 13 straight batters on five pitches or fewer, pitched into only one three-ball count and allowed no walks. The No. 1 overall draft pick had to withstand two early jams. After striking out his first MLB opponent Gregor Blanco with a 99 mph fastball, Cole allowed Marco Scutaro to single to right field and Hunter Pence to hit an infield single. Cole escaped by getting Brandon Belt to pop out on a 97 mph fastball. More trouble in the 2nd inning: Andres Torres and Joaquin Arias singled on two fastballs. After Lincecum bunted them over, Cole hit Blanco with a fastball on an 0-2 count. Cole used his slider to draw a flyout. Five runners on, no runs. That’s when Cole settled in, efficiently getting 13 consecutive outs on 40 total pitches. His gameplan consisted almost exclusively of his two best pitches: fastballs (80 percent) and sliders (17 percent). In the 7th inning, Cole’s fastball appeared to flatten out in giving up three hits to the Giants, despite continuing to light up 97 mph on the radar gun. Torres lined a single to right to start the inning, then Brandon Crawford lined a single to left. Though Cole had thrown just 76 pitches, pitching coach Ray Searage came out to talk and reliever Tony Watson began to warm up. Cole’s next pitch almost drew a 5-4-3 double play, but Arias beat it out. Then pinch-hitter Tony Abreu roped an RBI double into right field to end the shutout bid and send Cole off to cheers and ovations from the crowd of 30,614. Cole’s final line was similar to his Minor League numbers: 6.1 innings, 7 hits, 2 earned runs (he was charged when Watson gave up an RBI groundout to Blanco), 0 walks and 2 strikeouts. While he tilted more to “efficient” than “dominant,” Cole showed flashes with his fastball hitting triple-digits and getting reigning most valuable player Buster Posey to whiff at a slider in the dirt for his second strikeout. Perhaps most impressive of all, the pitcher who never recorded a base hit in the minors or batted at UCLA followed up his two-run single with a hard-hit comebacker to Lincecum and a line drive that was swiped by center fielder Blanco before it could bounce into the grass. Cole was something expected but also something new. More to come from PNC Park.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

WATCH: Tulo hits first home run with Blue Jays

NFLPA officially files Brady lawsuit, wants QB to play Week 1

Mariota’s lack of red flags was a concern for NFL teams

Tigers are officially “rebooting”

Jerry Jones backs Roger Goodell amid Deflategate controversy

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Brady, agent contacted AT&T in attempt to retrieve deleted texts

Report: Chancellor 'strongly considering a camp holdout'

Colts become favorites to win AFC with Brady suspended

Dodgers reportedly acquire Mat Latos and Michael Morse

Cardinals HC Bruce Arians calls Jen Welter a 'trailblazer'

Troy Tulowitzki felt 'blindsided' by trade to Blue Jays

Report: Mets acquire Carlos Gomez from the Brewers

Can Preller fix the mess in San Diego?

Mike Leach compares Deflategate to Kardashians

All Panthers home games will also be broadcast in Spanish

Report: Rangers are front-runner for Cole Hamels

Giants owner calls Pierre-Paul debacle ‘very disappointing’

Panthers WR cited for marijuana paraphernalia, had child in car

Bruins-Canadiens Winter Classic details announced

Jay Bruce and Carlos Gonzalez: Twin trade chips

Next summer's top 10 NBA free agents

Canseco will live as a woman to support Caitlyn Jenner

Giants owner says nobody from team has seen JPP's hand

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Can Preller fix the mess in San Diego?

Next summer's top 10 NBA free agents

Who is the NL's new top shortstop?

Cardinals HC Bruce Arians calls Jen Welter a 'trailblazer'

Mets still act like a small-market team

Tom Brady: I did nothing wrong

NFL upholds Tom Brady's suspension, legal battle likely

Cardinals hire first female NFL coach

Larry Bird: Michael Jordan would kill me in 1-on-1 now

Seau family: HOF broke their word

Kobe to see time at power forward next year

Mike Pettine not ruling out Manziel

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker