Found September 09, 2013 on Pirates Prospects:
Gerrit Cole looked like an ace tonight. (Photo Credit: David Hague) Five games ago, Gerrit Cole won game number 81, ending the Pirates’ 20-year losing streak. It was one of his best starts of the year, and was only topped by tonight’s outing, which just happened to be win number 82. As far as symbolism goes, having Gerrit Cole end the losing streak, and then post the first winning season is great. The losing streak began because of the departure of plenty of talented players, including staff ace Doug Drabek. It continued for so long for many reasons, but a large reason why the streak went so long was due to the lack of an ace since Drabek. And now the streak has been ended and a the first winning season since 1992 has been secured, all thanks to the ace of the future. Cole looked like a future ace tonight. He went seven shutout innings, giving up three hits, two walks, and striking out nine. After his last outing I pointed out that Cole was starting to look like an ace. In the second half he has the second best xFIP in the rotation, behind only A.J. Burnett, and slightly ahead of Francisco Liriano. The downside of Cole winning game numbers 81 and 82 is that the Pirates lost four in a row in between those starts. A big reason for that is because they saw a rare struggle from Liriano, saw a bad outing from Burnett which has been more common lately, saw a decent outing from Jeff Locke who eventually fell apart late in the game, and saw Charlie Morton struggle then leave his start early with an injury. With all of that going on, the Pirates definitely need Cole to step up down the stretch. They also needed him to be an ace tonight because the Texas Rangers had their own ace on the mound. Yu Darvish came into the game with the best strikeout percentage among Major League starters. That’s not always the best recipe for the Pirates, since pitchers tend to set career bests when they play the Pirates. Darvish was dealing, but only struck out six in seven innings. Still, Cole wasn’t getting much help. The only run came on back to back doubles in the seventh inning. Marlon Byrd doubled with two outs, then scored when Pedro Alvarez laced an opposite field double to the gap to give the Pirates a 1-0 lead. Cole had some problems later in the game. Earlier he was pounding the zone, getting strikeouts on low sliders, and working efficiently. Later in the game it looked like he was trying to nibble or get batters to chase too often outside. That led to his pitch count elevating in the final two innings. He got out of each inning with no damage, and finished with 92 pitches on the night, throwing 64 strikes. The Pirates turned to Tony Watson for the seventh inning, who pitched a perfect frame. As I wrote in the last Cole recap, Watson has been one of the best relievers in the second half. Jason Grilli isn’t ready for high leverage innings yet, but the Pirates don’t really need him with the way Watson has been pitching. Mark Melancon came on to close down the game, wrapping up win number 82 and giving the Pirates their first winning season since 1992.

Pittsburgh Pirates flamethrower Gerrit Cole will dominate as a reliever in October

In a somewhat surprising decision, Pittsburgh Pirates manager Clint Hurdle announced flamethrower Gerrit Cole will likely be used out of the bullpen during the postseason. After another quality outing on Monday, the 22-year-old Cole (7-7, 3.48 ERA) has now recorded 75 strikeouts over 98.1 innings. Chosen first overall out of UCLA in 2011, the 6-foot-4, 220 pound Cole consistently...

Pirates secure first winning season since 1992

With a 1-0 win over Yu Darvish and the Texas Rangers Monday night, the Pittsburgh Pirates were guaranteed their first winning season in over two decades! The 2013 MLB season has been a strange one for Pirates fans–

Gerrit Cole and Yu Darvish face off as Pirates look to snap losing streak

Five days ago, Gerrit Cole took the mound against the Brewers and before the game started, I wrote that I thought it'd be awfully appropriate for him to get the Pirates' 81st win. If you had told me that night that Cole would, in fact, help the Pirates to win 81 and that he'd also have a shot at getting them win 82, I would've been awfully concerned. And yet here...

Bucs won't shut down Cole

Gerrit Cole isn't going to get Strasburg-ed. With the Pirates poised to reach the playoffs for the first time in 21 years, Pittsburgh fans can expect to see the team's star rookie in the postseason rotation. After the Pirates completed a three-game sweep of the Texas Rangers with a 7-5 victory Wednesday afternoon, Pirates general manager Neal Huntington told FOX Sports...

Pittsburgh Pirates vs. Texas Rangers – Game 144

82 wins.  Our long national nightmare is over. And what a job by Gerrit Cole last night.  Throwing the team and the city on his back and doing everything he could to win that game. I hate to say the Pirates need this series but we’re under 20 games.  The Pirates have a ton of…

Pirates clinch first winning season since 1992

The Pittsburgh Pirates have done it. They have clinched their first winning season since 1992. The Pirates edged the Texas Rangers 1-0 on Monday night after a phenomenal pitcher’s duel between rookie right-hander Gerrit Cole and Yu Darvish. Entering the game, the Pirates had lost a season-high four consecutive contests since earning their 81st win last Tuesday. The Pirates and...

Win No. 82 small step towards bigger goal for Pirates

ARLINGTON, Texas The Pittsburgh Pirates are going to be winners for the first time since 1992. Monday's 1-0 victory over the Texas Rangers behind a dazzling pitching performance from rookie Gerrit Cole saw to that. But if you were expecting anything different following win No. 82 than the Pirates displayed in any of their other 81 victories this year, you'd be disappointed...

Game 143: Pirates 1 Rangers 0

For the first time since 1992, the Pittsburgh Pirates will finish with a winning record. Think about that and just breath it in for a second. Just enjoy it. The "82 wins" post will come later tonight, because I've been writing it for eight years now and it's still somehow not finished. For now, let's talk about the game that brough us #82.  Gerrit Cole...

Bucs clinch elusive winning season

Clinching their first winning season since 1992, rookie right-hander Gerrit Cole had a career-high nine strikeouts over seven innings to outpitch Yu Darvish and lead the Pittsburgh Pirates to a 1-0 victory over the Texas Rangers on Monday night. The Pirates (82-61) didn't get a runner to second base against Darvish (12-8) until Marlon Byrd's two-out double in the seventh...

2013 Fantasy Baseball, The Daily Fix: September 11, 2013

Let me offer a belated congratulations to the Pittsburgh Pirates and their fans. On Monday, the Pirates won their 82nd game of the season behind a strong seven inning effort by Gerrit Cole. This marked the first time in 21 seasons that the Pirates will finish with a record above .500. To put that in perspective, let’s consider the list of events that have occurred during that time...

Rangers offense struggles as Pirates make history in loss

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) -- Clinching their first winning season since 1992, rookie right-hander Gerrit Cole had a career-high nine strikeouts over seven innings to outpitch Yu Darvish and lead the Pittsburgh Pirates to a 1-0 victory over the Texas Rangers on Monday night. The Pirates (82-61) didn't get a runner to second base against Darvish (12-8) until Marlon Byrd's two...

What You Need to Know: The Pirates Make it Official by Daniel Rathman

Gerrit Cole helps Pittsburgh seal win no. 82, Juan Uribe breaks out, Gio Gonzalez nearly no-hits the Mets, plus Andrelton Simmons and more.

The day after

Last night and today has been a lot of fun, but that's over and done with now. The Pirates have 82 wins and a winning season is clinched; now it's time to focus on winning the NL Central.  Last night's win was actually a huge step in that direction as much as it was the club's 82nd win. I sort of figured they'd need two wins in Texas to stay in the race before...
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