Pirates top prospect and former 2011 1st-overall pick Gerrit Cole debuts tonight against the San Francisco Giants. This is big. Despite the recent, shall we say, lack of success, Gerrit follows only two Pirates 1st-overall picks in the last 15 years. The notorious Bryan Bullington, and Anna Benson's husband Kris.
Coincidentally, Gerrit shares more than just that top overall spot with Bullington and Benson. All three are/were right handed pitchers. Let's hope that's where the similarities end. Bullington never won a game with Pittsburgh, and only one in his career. Benson fared a bit better, winning his debut before seismically crapping the bed over the next 5-6 years…having a 9-6 record be the pinnacle of his Pirates career.
So we rejoice at Cole's entrance tonight, as it brings a new wind. The team is in much better shape and nobody passed up Greinke or Fielder or Hamels or Cain to get Gerrit Cole. This passes for playoff-level celebrations in Pittsburgh.
Go Gerrit. Go Buccos.