Card: 2021 Topps Gypsy Queen #26
"He's (Gerrit Cole) really good. I've caught some really good ones, and I've been impressed -- with his stuff, his demeanor, his makeup on the mound. Stuff-wise, he has an electric arm and he knows how to use it. He's freakin' good. If he's not the best, he's right up there," Catcher Russell Martin
Gerrit Alan Cole (born September 8, 1990 in Newport Beach, CA) is a pitcher for the New York Yankees. He previously played for the Pittsburgh Pirates and Houston Astros. After his college baseball career, the Pirates made him the first overall selection in the 2011 MLB draft.
Gerrit has significant Italian American roots, as his maternal grandfather was half Italian and his maternal grandmother was Mary Lou Aversa, the daughter of Ralph Pasquale Aversa and Mary Ann Critelli (from Calabria).
Cole made his MLB debut in 2013, and was named the National League (NL) Rookie of the Month in September 2013. He was named the NL Pitcher of the Month for April 2015, and an MLB All-Star in 2015. The Pirates traded Cole to the Astros in the 2017–18 offseason. On September 18, 2019, Cole became the 18th pitcher in major league history to strike out at least 300 batters in a season.
Overall, Gerrit has been recognized for/as:
- 6-time All-Star (2015, 2018, 2019, 2021, 2022, 2023)
- AL ERA Leader (2019)
- AL Strikeouts Leader (2019, 2022)
- AL Complete Games Leader (2020)
- 2-time AL Shutouts Leader (2018 & 2020)
- 15 Wins Seasons: 3 (2015, 2018 & 2019)
- 20 Wins Seasons: 1 (2019)
- 200 Innings Pitched Seasons: 4 (2015 & 2017-2019)
- 200 Strikeouts Seasons: 3 (2015, 2018 & 2019)
- 300 Strikeouts Seasons: 1 (2019)
- Set all-time NY Yankees record for strikeouts in a season (2022)
On December 16, 2019, Cole signed a $324 million contract with the Yankees, the largest contract in major league history for a pitcher.
Interestingly, in wooing Cole to the Yankees, manager Aaron Boone presented Cole two bottles of fine Italian wine, 2004 and 2005 vintage Masseto merlot. Those are two of the world’s most coveted red wines and retail for around $800 to $900 each. Why were these bottles of wine so special to Gerrit Cole? Well, one is the same bottle that he and his wife Amy enjoyed during their anniversary dinner in Italy. Cole said of the act,
“One of the vintages that they brought was the exact same vintage from the anniversary dinner that my wife [Amy] and I had in Florence. I was a little bit on my heels. I remember trying to stay focused through the meeting and not think about booze the entire time. I still couldn't figure it out.” Much of the credit for dropping the right-hander’s jaw goes to Yankees visiting clubhouse manager Lou Cucuzza, who had conversations with Cole, presumably about their shared Italian American heritage.
Gerrit Cole is part of the All-Star Player Tour – Go to the Next Stop
Gerrit is also part of the New York Yankee Players Tour – Go To the Next Stop
Gerrit is also part of the Pittsburgh Pirates Players Tour – Go To the Next Stop
Gerrit is part of the MLB Current Players Tour – Go To The Next Stop
See all Cole’s baseball cards at TCDB
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Thanks to Baseball Amore site visitor C D’Angelo for alerting us to Gerrit’s Italian Ancestry