Cole was as pumped as Yankee fans in the stands at George M. Steinbrenner Field and trying to catch a glimpse of his first spring training start against the Pittsburgh Pirates on social media.
“It was exciting! I had fun,” Cole told Marakovits.
“We executed a lot of good pitches. Got to get into some game speed environment with my teammates, Gary [Sanchez] specifically. A couple of conversations about who’s going to cover the bag. So, that kind of stuff’s fun,” Cole added.
Cole also spoke to his rapport with Sanchez and being aggressive.
“I definitely feel comfortable with him enough to go out there and attack. We’re there to go ahead and execute pitches at this point,” Cole commented on the early going.
“Now, you know we want to be at a better point in September, October, than we are now and that’s just going to come with experience. There’s will to get better on his side. There’s a will to get better on my side. So, try not to think too much and just kind of let it come out organically,” Cole noted on improving upon learning each other’s tendencies.
The Yankees’ new prized ace spoke to where his mindset is at for this juncture of early spring training.
“Well, you’re out there pitching. I’m not out there just going through the motions in a sense. That’s why I like pitching in spring training games as opposed to kind of stuff on the backfield but location isn’t going to be mid-season form at this point,” Cole said of having the game adrenaline.
“So, the objectives are try to kind of hit the tolerance, hit the low that you want to hit, 20 good pitches, 20 good rips is good. And make sure the action on the pitches is where you want. I think we really threw just a few kind of poor misfires and for the rest of the pitches, they were all competitive. So it’s a high level of execution, so we’re pleased with that,” Cole added on building up.
Gerrit Cole in his @Yankees Spring Training debut:
Cole concluded by spelling out his routine in preparing for the regular season.
“I’m already in a five-day after the two-inning BP, four days off to slide into this, I’ll have my regular routine essentially from here on out and so just be perfecting and honing in the process and just trying to get ready for the season from that aspect,” Cole added.
Cole recorded two whiffs and hit 98 mph on the radar gun in his Yankee debut.