Published: Sun, January 14, 2018
Sport | By Cameron Gross

Gerrit Cole reportedly traded to Astros

Gerrit Cole reportedly traded to Astros

For several hours Wednesday, Twitter crackled with reports that a deal to send Cole to Houston was imminent. The announcement was made by Astros General Manager Jeff Luhnow.

Houston is sending pitcher Joe Musgrove and third baseman Colin Moran as the principle members of the deal.

Cole, 27, is coming off a down season in which he posted a career-worst 4.26 ERA, but he is under team control for two more seasons. Moran, 25, batted.301 with 18 home runs in 82 minor-league games, and was four for 11 over seven games with the big club.

The Yankees had expressed interest in Cole, who finished fourth in the 2015 National League Cy Young Award voting but struggled last season with a 4.26 ERA in 33 starts.

This is a win for the Astros and for Cole and a clear sign the Pirates are beginning to rebuild. Martin was originally an eighth-round pick by the Astros in the 2013 draft.

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Moran, 25, was a first-round pick in 2013 by the Marlins.

Injuries checked Cole to 21 starts in 2016, but he rebounded previous year and was one of just 15 pitchers in the majors to work 200-plus innings.

The Astros, the reigning World Series champions, will add Cole to an already stacked rotation that features Dallas Keuchel, Justin Verlander, Charlie Morton, Lance McCullers and Collin McHugh.

Outfielder Andrew McCutchen is scheduled to become a free agent after next season. He improved both his strikeout and walk rates previous year, and the move to Minute Maid Park is an upgrade for Cole, both in terms of run prevention and strikeouts.

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