Gerrit Cole
Gerrit Cole
28-Year-Old PitcherSP
Houston Astros
2019 Fantasy Outlook
The smart money was on Cole thriving in Houston, despite a move to the American League. However, no one expected such a dominating campaign. Not only was there a latent park upgrade, but the Astros identified a flaw in Cole's pitch mix and increased his curveball usage. The result was a cascade effect as Cole's entire arsenal enjoyed an upgrade. He posted a career-best 14.1 SwStr% without sacrificing much control. The result was his third 200-inning season in the last four years (just five others have accomplished the feat in each of the past two seasons). Cole's success was driven by a huge improvement versus left-handed batters against whom the increased use of his curveball was paramount. Cole will be hard-pressed to repeat this level of success without the platoon edge, so expect regression. Still, his durability renders Cole one of the few workhorses in an era of five and fly. It'll cost, but Cole should remain one of the few elite starters in the game. Read Past Outlooks
RANKSFrom Preseason
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$Signed a one-year, $13.5 million contract with the Astros in February of 2019 after winning arbitration hearing.
Pitches five shutout frames
PHouston Astros
May 17, 2019
Cole allowed no runs on six hits with seven strikeouts and one walk across five innings during a no-decision against the Red Sox on Friday.
ANALYSIS
Unfortunately, the Astros didn't support Cole with any runs, and he couldn't pitch past the fifth because he had already thrown 99 pitches. This breaks a streak of three straight wins for Cole, but clearly, he's firmly back on track after yielding nine runs against the Rangers on April 20. In five starts since then, Cole owns a 2.01 ERA. Overall, he is 4-4 with a 3.56 ERA, 1.04 WHIP and 93 strikeouts in 60.2 innings this season. He will look for his fifth win during his next start against the White Sox on Wednesday.
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Left/Right Pitching Splits
Since 2017
 
 
-9%
BAA vs LHP
2019
 
 
-10%
BAA vs LHP
2018
 
 
-30%
BAA vs LHP
2017
 
 
-10%
BAA vs RHP
BAA Batters K BB H 2B 3B HR
Since 2017vs Left .214 916 303 75 179 36 5 29
Since 2017vs Right .234 975 262 60 210 47 3 30
2019vs Left .196 123 51 11 22 5 0 4
2019vs Right .217 120 42 5 25 6 0 5
2018vs Left .162 389 160 38 56 14 1 7
2018vs Right .231 410 116 26 87 22 1 12
2017vs Left .268 404 92 26 101 17 4 18
2017vs Right .241 445 104 29 98 19 2 13
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Home/Away Pitching Splits
Since 2017
 
 
-2%
ERA on Road
2019
 
 
-7%
ERA at Home
2018
 
 
-7%
ERA on Road
2017
 
 
-2%
ERA on Road
ERA WHIP IP W L SV K/9 BB/9 HR/9
Since 2017Home 3.61 1.07 216.2 13 8 0 11.0 2.5 1.1
Since 2017Away 3.53 1.18 247.1 18 13 0 11.0 2.8 1.2
2019Home 3.42 0.91 26.1 2 1 0 12.6 2.1 2.1
2019Away 3.67 1.14 34.1 2 3 0 14.7 2.6 0.8
2018Home 2.99 0.97 96.1 8 2 0 13.2 2.6 0.9
2018Away 2.77 1.10 104.0 7 3 0 11.7 3.1 0.8
2017Home 4.31 1.22 94.0 3 5 0 8.2 2.4 1.1
2017Away 4.21 1.28 109.0 9 7 0 9.1 2.5 1.7
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Stat Review
How does Gerrit Cole compare to other starting pitchers?
This section compares his stats with all starting pitcher seasons from the previous three seasons (minimum 120 innings). The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that stat and it would be considered average.
K/BB
5.81
 
K/9
13.8
 
BB/9
2.4
 
HR/9
1.3
 
Fastball
96.9 mph
 
ERA
3.56
 
WHIP
1.04
 
BABIP
.327
 
GB/FB
1.15
 
Strand %
72.2%
 
Advanced Pitching Stats
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Defensive Stats
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Gerrit Cole
Weekly Pitcher Rankings: Justin-credible
3 days ago
Todd Zola ranks the week's pitching as elder statesman Justin Verlander is still rolling along, right into the top spot in the rankings.
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DraftKings MLB: Friday Picks
4 days ago
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Weekly Pitcher Rankings: Strikeouts on Sale in Aisle 5
10 days ago
Todd Zola's weekly pitcher rankings features Chris Sale in the top spot, as the Boston hurler looks to have turned around his season.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
2018
2017
2016
2015
2014
2013
2012
Few pitchers were impacted as negatively by the Great Home Run Spike as Cole. His HR/9 shot from 0.54 in 2016 to 1.37 last season, which was the main culprit behind his nearly 50-point increase in ERA. Cole improved his strikeout and walk rates in his age-26 season, adding a full strikeout to his K/9, and in turn shaved 21 points off his xFIP. Most importantly, the right-hander managed to avoid the injury bug after missing the end of 2016 with an elbow ligament injury, exceeding 200 innings for the second time in his career -- Cole was one of just 15 major-league arms to reach 200 innings in 2017. The issues with the long ball may very well persist, but that's going to be the case with a lot of talented pitchers in today's landscape. Health remains the biggest concern, but Cole has a case as an SP2 in mixed leagues following the move to Houston as (believe it or not) it is a significant park upgrade.
Cole landed on the disabled list three times in 2016. An elbow ligament injury ultimately ended his season after he tried pitching through the pain. He opted for rest over offseason surgery. When Cole did toe the rubber, the results were disappointing with the right-hander registering career-worst numbers across the board: 3.88 ERA, 1.44 WHIP, 2.8 BB/9 and 7.6 K/9. His average fastball velocity (95.2 mph) was close to his career mark (95.4 mph), but the pinpoint accuracy was lacking. Cole is a rebound candidate -- he's one season removed from 19-8, 2.60 ERA, 1-09 WHIP and 202 strikeouts in 208 IP -- but he also carries more risk than other starters in his tier.
Cole appeared en route to an elite season in 2015 before a second half slowdown put a small damper on things. He went 13-3 with a 2.30 ERA and 1.12 WHIP leading up to the All-Star Game, only to go 6-5 with a 2.98 ERA and 1.06 WHIP the rest of the way (not exactly bad numbers). For whatever reason, the 25-year-old posted much better numbers during day games (10-1, 2.05 ERA) than at night (9-7, 3.00 ERA). He increased his slider usage from 12.1% to 21.2%, which enhanced his effectiveness, but keep in mind that pitchers who rely heavily on sliders tend to get hurt more frequently than those who don’t. Aside from the increased slider reliance, there is no reason why Cole can’t put together another outstanding campaign in 2016.
The budding ace battled injury and inconsistent velocity in his sophomore season for the Bucs. Cole, who made two separate trips to the disabled list with shoulder fatigue and a lat strain, made seven starts upon his return in late August, going 4-1 with a 3.44 ERA, 1.02 WHIP and 60 strikeouts in 52.1 innings. At times his velocity dipped, even within the same starts, though his overall fastball velocity fell only slightly (96.1 mph to 95.5 mph) from 2013. For the season, he compiled a 3.65 ERA (3.30 FIP), 1.21 WHIP and 138 strikeouts in 138 innings. If Cole can improve upon his .316 BABIP, there's a good chance he'll return better overall numbers. With a little bit better luck in the injury department, the hard-throwing righty could break out the way many expected him to last season.
Cole won his first four starts in Pittsburgh, but struck out only 11 batters in the process. Theories were floated: Cole himself said that he was pitching to contact and hadn't unleashed his entire repertoire. After coming up second best in an Aug. 8 showdown with fellow phenom Jose Fernandez, Cole elevated his game to a new level. In his final eight starts, the 2011 first-overall draft pick went 6-2 with a 2.28 ERA, 1.19 WHIP and 53:13 K:BB ratio. Cole led all major league pitchers with a 96.1 mph average fastball (110 IP minimum). The Pirates then chose Cole over A.J. Burnett to start Game 5 of the NLDS, an indication of his top-of-the-rotation status. The 6-foot-4, 235-pound right-hander matured in the majors in a very short time period. It wouldn't be surprising to see him encounter some bumps along the way, but he'll be called upon as a frontline starter from the get-go in 2014.
Regardless of whether Pittsburgh keeps its front office intact moving forward, Cole has a decent chance of cracking the team's rotation by the end of 2013. Not even the stingy Pirates could keep the top overall draft pick from 2011 at High-A for all of 2012. Cole began the year with Bradenton, where he compiled a 2.69 ERA and 1.10 WHIP in 67 innings. His 69:21 K:BB helped make the decision to promote him to Double-A any easy one. Pitching for the Curve, Cole registered a 2.90 ERA and 1.31 WHIP in 59 frames, to go along with a 60:23 BB:K. He hasn't looked elite in big showcases such as the 2011 AFL Rising Stars Game and 2012 Futures Game, but he's proven otherwise consistent. To think that his 100-mph fastball (which borders on the flat side) might be no better than his third best pitch is a good problem to have.
Time will tell whether the Pirates made the right move selecting Cole first overall in the 2011 draft, but his good size, downward plane and right-handed delivery dovetail perfectly with the profile of general manager Neal Huntington's ideal starting pitcher. The 6-foot-4 power hurler hit 100 mph regularly in the Arizona Fall League and offers a plus slider and changeup. Cole never put up dominating numbers at UCLA and was actually outpitched by fellow first-round pick Trevor Bauer. His pedigree dates to high school, however, when he was selected in the first round by the Yankees in 2008. Pittsburgh does not typically advance prospects quickly, making it unlikely that Cole sees the major leagues until 2013, at the earliest.
More Fantasy News
Strikes out season-high 12
PHouston Astros
May 12, 2019
Cole (4-4) picked up the win in Saturday's 11-4 rout of the Rangers, allowing one run on four hits over six innings while striking out a season-high 12.
ANALYSIS
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Fans nine in win over Royals
PHouston Astros
May 6, 2019
Cole (3-4) picked up the win Monday, allowing four runs on seven hits over 6.1 innings while striking out nine as the Astros downed the Royals, 6-4.
ANALYSIS
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Strikes out 11 in seven scoreless
PHouston Astros
April 30, 2019
Cole (2-4) threw seven shutout innings, allowing just one hit with three walks while striking out 11 in an 11-0 victory against the Twins on Tuesday.
ANALYSIS
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Swallows tough loss
PHouston Astros
April 25, 2019
Cole (1-4) took the loss after surrendering two runs on three hits and three walks while striking out 10 over seven innings Thursday against the Indians.
ANALYSIS
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Confident in mechanics
PHouston Astros
April 25, 2019
Cole, who is starting Thursday against the Indians, is confident he's cleaned up his mechanical indicators that led to the worst start of his career last week, David Barron of the Houston Chronicle reports.
ANALYSIS
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