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Pirates send former No. 1 pick Gerrit Cole to Triple-A

Mar 18, 2013, 10:15 AM EDT

Bob Nutting, Gerrit Cole

Pittsburgh has reassigned Gerrit Cole to Triple-A after the former No. 1 overall pick threw 10 spring training innings.

Michael Sanserino of the Pittsburgh Post Gazette writes that Cole “believes he is ready to pitch in the major leagues and was upset by the reassignment,” but realistically he was always likely to begin this season in the minors considering he’s 22 years old with all of 13 starts above Double-A.

Cole has lived up to the hype since the Pirates selected him out of the UCLA and ranks as a top-10 prospect according to Baseball America, but so far the only players from the 2011 first round to reach the majors are Trevor Bauer and Dylan Bundy (and only briefly in both cases).

Cole was asked whether he thought service time considerations were the cause of his not making the Opening Day roster and replied that “maybe somebody else has a better idea about that.” However, given that he’s made just one start at Triple-A it’s awfully hard to assume the Pirates deciding he needs more time in the minors is anything but development based.

  1. unclemosesgreen - Mar 18, 2013 at 10:24 AM

    Maybe he’s ready, maybe he isn’t. This is his chance to prove it.

  2. steelpenbucs87 - Mar 18, 2013 at 10:26 AM

    Makes complete sense – no reason to start the clock on this guy now, especially given that the Pirates rotation is pretty much set at this point (as much as it can be given the talent).

    He’ll be up mid-summer if he continues to pitch well in Indy. At that point we’ll have a better sense for which JMac we’re getting, whether or not Karstens is put together with chopsticks and bubble gum (spoiler alert: he is), and whether Locke, Liriano, and others are worthy of a rotation spot.

    Future is bright for this kid, he just has to wait a little longer.

  3. unlost1 - Mar 18, 2013 at 10:30 AM

    I was upset with my company when they didn’t make me the CEO right out of college so i feel for the kid.

  4. danaking - Mar 18, 2013 at 10:47 AM

    I hope they gave him the speech Earl Weaver used to give prospects who were disappointed at being sent down: Prove i was wrong, kid. Make me bring you back.

    For all their faults, the Pirates have a good track record the past few years of promoting their top prospects when they feel the kid is ready, not to fill a perceived need. (Walker, McCutchen, Alvarez–though they may have been a little early with him.) If Cole is lights out in AAA,, he’ll pitch in the Show this year.

  5. asimonetti88 - Mar 18, 2013 at 11:10 AM

    You have to like the competitive fire though. He wants to play against the best. He’ll be in the majors soon, he’s a great young player.

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