Video: Gerrit Cole hit a no-doubt home run, the first of his career

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Pirates starter Gerrit Cole struck out eight Cubs over six innings at Wrigley Field on Sunday afternoon, but that wasn’t his only contribution to his team’s win, which combined with a Brewers loss to the Cardinals, moved the Pirates back into second place in the NL Central.

In the top of the seventh, with a runner on second base and one out, Cole smoked a Blake Parker first-pitch fastball near the top row of the bleachers in left field, a no doubt two-run home run to push the Pirates’ lead to 10-2. It’s the first home run — and extra-base hit — of the 23-year-old’s career. Among pitchers with at least 30 plate appearances this season, Cole has the third-highest OPS at .569. He trails Travis Wood (.739) and Madison Bumgarner (.726).

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On the pitching side, Cole got the win, allowing four runs (three earned) on nine hits. He struck out eight without issuing a walk.

Nationals’ Strasburg ejected for arguing from the stands

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
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NEW YORK — A pitcher getting ejected for arguing balls and strikes – on his day off? And, from the stands?

Nationals star Stephen Strasburg earned one of baseball’s most unique ejections – probably ever – in the third inning of Washington’s game against the New York Mets on Thursday.

Strasburg was sitting in Section 121 at Citi Field in this socially distant season because he’s scheduled to start Friday against Baltimore Orioles. He was apparently unhappy with the strike zone of plate umpire Carlos Torres after Austin Voth‘s 2-2 pitch to Pete Alonso on the outside corner was ruled a ball.

Moments later, Torres ejected last year’s World Series MVP, though it took a few seconds to realize who had been tossed.

Someone was heard yelling: “You’re (expletive) brutal” shortly before television cameras captured Strasburg doffing his cap as he walked up the staircase on his way out of the park.

“Sorry, folks – sorry, FCC,” Mets broadcaster Gary Cohen said on SNY.

The usually stoic Strasburg appeared to be grinning underneath his blue mask as he made his exit.