Gerrit Cole, Yankees
Jason Szenes for the New York post

The New York Yankees have been waiting for the return of their ace pitcher, Gerrit Cole, for over a month now. During the Spring Training, the 2023 AL Cy Young winner hurt his right elbow really badly. Later, the injury resulted in inflammation. Eventually, the team revealed that the ace starter would not make his debut in the 2024 season for another one to two months. It was a big blow to the Bronx Bombers right before the Opening Day in Arizona. Last year, the best performer for the NY side was Gerrit Cole. The team did not do well at all, as they failed to make the postseason. There were tons of injury issues, including key players like Aaron Judge and Anthony Rizzo.

They finished with an awful 82-80 record. It was the worst season for the Yankees in the last 30 years. However, even when things turned so bad, Cole managed to pitch at his career-best level, earning him the AL Cy Young award for the first time. But then to lose him right before the season when the Yankees were looking for redemption was nothing but bad timing. Anyhow, the NY side has managed well without Cole so far. But the ace is getting fitter and will soon return to the lineup. On Saturday, he will throw off a mound for the first time since his injury in spring training. 


Gerrit Cole Looking To Pitch Off A Mound On Saturday After A Really Long Time


After the ace starter hurt his right elbow, there were rumors that he won’t return before June. But the NY side has always been positive about Cole’s recovery. He still might take some more time to get ready to return to the big league. But getting off the mound is a big step towards that. That’s what Aaron Boone believes in, and he is happy to tell the media. Recently, the Yankees manager told the media, including The Associated Press, that the rehab of the ace pitcher has gone well so far. On Friday, before the game against the Detroit Tigers, Aaron Boone mentioned that Cole’s buildup, checking the boxes, and the level of his pitching intensity have been going really well so far. 

Moreover, Boone said about Gerrit Cole, “So far so good.” On top of that, the skipper feels getting off the mound will be another big step for Gerrit Cole. However, ever since the injury, the reigning American League Cy Young winner has been on the 60-day Injured List. Previously, Gerrit Cole had been throwing on flat ground. But then, the Yankees management shut him down in March because he was going through nerve irritation and edema in his throwing elbow. Cole is 33 years old. 

The 2023 AL Cy Young Winner Can Become A Free Agent After This Season

Gerrit Cole
Gerrit Cole (r.) speaks with Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner (l.) earlier in spring training. Charles Wenzelberg/NY Post

In 2023, Gerrit Cole went 15-4. He had the best record in the American League with a 2.63 ERA, along with 222 strikeouts. Moreover, he pitched 209 innings and had 33 starts. He is a six-time All-Star with a nine-year contract worth $324 million. The Yankees pay him $36 million per year.

After his fifth season, that’s this year; he has the right to opt-out. Will Cole opt out after the ongoing season? That’s highly unlikely, as he is a big Yankees fan himself. But as per the contract he can become a free agent after the 2024 season. If that happens, the Yankees can void his opt-out with an added and guaranteed $36 million salary for 2029.

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