TAMPA – The Orioles roughed up Gerrit Cole before he could get out of his penultimate start of the spring, tagging the Yankees with four earned runs in his fifth and final frame in Sunday’s game, a 5-3 win for Baltimore in George. Field M. Steinbrenner.
That inning included a hit-by-pitch, a walk, a three-run home run by Orioles catcher Anthony Bemboom and an RBI double by outfielder Kyle Stowers. In all, Cole threw 29 pitches and finished the day with a 3.94 ERA in the spring.
“That was the worst inning of the spring, so it’s not a great aftertaste,” Cole said afterward, though he took some positives from the performance. Meaning, she topped five and experienced a stressful inning against the shot clock. “There will come a time when I throw 30 or more pitches in an inning on the clock, so it was nice to get past that,” Cole continued.
Cole also allowed six hits and eight hard balls while striking out seven on 81 pitches. He added that he was not discouraged after the departure. Neither did his manager.
“I don’t come out of this feeling like he’s anywhere but on the right track,” Boone said of his Opening Day starter.
Cole will look to increase his pitch count to 90 when he makes his final start of the spring Friday at George M. Steinbrenner Field against the Twins.
“He avoided gray pants all spring,” Boone said of Cole, who has only pitched in Tampa this show season.
Before that happens, Luis Severino will start Tuesday’s home game against the Tigres. Clarke Schmidt will pitch Wednesday’s road game against the Nationals. Néstor Cortés will face the Cardenales on Thursday in Jupiter, and Domingo Germán will stay that day for a live session.
Cole has closely watched the prospects vying for the Yankees’ starting shortstop job. And while the pitcher isn’t picking favorites, he said Anthony Volpe and Oswald Peraza, who made a couple of defensive snaps Sunday, have brought positive vibes to camp.
“Everyone identifies with young players coming in for the first time because they also remember experiencing those emotions,” Cole said. “To see a really good battle with two really good players… not a bad choice, but it’s kind of inspiring. It’s a good battle, and it’s fun to watch. The whole world feeds off that energy.”
As the Yankees weigh their bullpen options, Boone said whether or not a pitcher is already on the 40-man roster will play a factor.
“It always weighs in a bit, especially if you’re talking about something that’s close,” he said.
In recent days, Boone has indicated that lefty Matt Krook and righty Jimmy Cordero are among the 40 roster contenders in the mix, though they’re not the only options. Cordero struck out two in a scoreless inning on Sunday.
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The Yankees announced OF Jasson Dominguez and RHP Will Warren are the recipients of the 2022 Kevin Lawn Award, also known as the organization’s Minor League Position Player and Pitcher of the Year.
Dominguez slashed .273/.376/.461 with seven triples, 16 home runs, 59 RBIs and 37 stolen bases in 120 games at Single-A, High-A and Double-A last year. While he struggled through a five-game Double-A regular season (.105/.227/.368 with one HR), he shined in just as many playoff games, hitting .450 with three home runs and 10 RBIs. . This spring, he hit .455 with a 1.565 OPS, four home runs, nine RBIs and one stolen base during his first major league camp.
“It’s probably a lot closer now and certainly on our radar as far as how the last 12 months have gone,” Boone said after recently reassigning “The Martian.”
Meanwhile, Warren turned heads while pitching for High-A Hudson Valley and Double-A Somerset last season, posting a 3.91 ERA in 26 starts and 129 innings. He appeared in a game earlier this spring and impressed Boone with two scoreless innings.
“I loved what I saw,” Boone said.
The Yankees reassigned 1B/OF Jake Bauers and OF Billy McKinney to minor league camp after Sunday’s game. Bauers is hitting .391 since the spring began, while McKinney is hitting .179.
Any Yankees fan still waiting for the Jurickson Profar signing can put that dream aside. The former Padre stays in the National League West. On Sunday, Profar agreed to a one-year contract with the Rockies that guarantees him $7.75 million, according to the Jon Heyman of the New York Post.