In a much larger context, Hal Steinbrenner seduced Gerrit Cole into joining the Yankees for an astounding amount of money, believing that he could win the Yankees to multiple World Series titles.
That can happen in the nine years Cole worked for Steinbrenner, who with sister Jennifer, club president Randy Levine and COO Lonn Trost saw Cole choke on the Red Sox at Yankee Stadium on Friday night.
Still, Cole’s first taste of baseball’s greatest rivalry was also why Steinbrenner wanted him in pinstripes.
With Aaron Judge joining Giancarlo Stanton on the list of injured earlier in the day with a strained right calf, the Yankees lineup was without much firepower. Add cold in Gary Sanchez, Gleyber Torres, Brett Gardner and Aaron Hicks all at once and Cole had to deliver against a solid, if not great, lineup.
Cole took up the challenge on his fifth start and took the Yankees to a 1
It was Cole’s 20th win in a row and put him in third place on the all-time list with Jake Arrieta, Roger Clemens and Rube Marquard. Carl Hubbell is first at 24 in a row and Roy Face is second at 22. Cole has not lost in 27 starts.
Cole allowed a run at a season high of seven innings. He gave up four hits, hit eight, and never gave up a walk.
In a sign that Sanchez could get out of a major slump, the catcher started a homer with two runs into the stands in left field, increasing the Yankees’ lead to 5-1 in the fifth. It was Sanchez’s second homer in as many games and the third of the season. Torres, who started the game at .161 (9: 56), could shake the chills as he had four hits, including a double with two runs in the third inning. Torres was replaced by Tyler Wade at shortstop.
Mike Tauchman, who replaced Judge in the right field, drove in four runs and the batsman-designate Clint Frazier broke the game with a double in two runs in the seventh run in three runs to 8-1.
The win was the seventh win by the 13-6 Yankees against the Red Sox and the twelfth in 13 games. You’re 18-4 against the Red Sox in the Bronx since 2018.
A prime example of how overwhelming Cole was when he hit elite batsman JD Martinez three times on bad looking swings.
Thanks to Jonathan Holder, who went two to start eighth when the Yankees led 8-1 and surrendered two hits, Aaron Boone was forced to take Adam Ottavino with runners in first and second place, one out and Martinez the next batsman to call. He went in search of his fourth breath of the game. Ottavino ended the rally by getting Xander Bogaerts to swing through a pusher.
Cole found his first real test in the fifth inning when Christian Vazquez hit with an out to the right and the easy hitting Jackie Bradley Jr. doubled in the left field gap. With the runners in second and third place and the Yankees 2-1, Cole provided Jonathan Arauz, batsman No. 9, with a grounder for third baseman Gio Urshela to end the goal threat.