After Carlos Martinez got the best of the Pirates in the first game of an important NL Central battle on Thursday, it was Gerrit Cole’s turn last night. Cole allowed two runs over seven innings as the Pirates defeated the Cardinals 5-2 at PNC Park in Pittsburgh.
Cole held St. Louis to five hits while walking two and striking out three. The only offense against him was a two-run homer from Matt Carpenter in the third inning.
Neil Walker led the charge for Pittsburgh’s offense, going 3-for-4 with a two-run homer. Lance Lynn gave up five runs in just four innings of work in the loss. Mark Melancon finished off the win for Pittsburgh with his MLB-leading 29th save.
Cole leads the majors with 13 wins and has an excellent 2.30 ERA and 116/28 K/BB ratio in 117 1/3 innings this season.
With the win, the Pirates are 4 1/2 games behind the Cardinals in the NL Central. The series will continue tonight with a matchup of John Lackey and A.J. Burnett.
Your Friday box scores and AP recaps:
White Sox 1, Cubs 0
Cardinals 2, Pirates 5
Yankees 5, Red Sox 1
Diamondbacks 2, Mets 4
Athletics 1, Indians 5
Astros 1, Rays 3
Reds 1, Marlins 0
Nationals 2, Orioles 3
Padres 3, Rangers 4
Blue Jays 3, Royals 0
Braves 3, Rockies 5
Tigers 6, Twins 8
Brewers 2, Dodgers 3
Angels 7, Mariners 3
Phillies 2, Giants 15
ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that the Rockies and shortstop Trevor Story have come to terms on a two-year, $27.5 million deal, buying out his two remaining years of arbitration eligibility.
Story, 27, and the Rockies did not agree on a salary before the deadline earlier this month. Story filed for $11.5 million while the team countered at $10.75 million. The average annual value of this deal — $13.75 million — puts him a little bit ahead this year and likely a little bit behind next year.
This past season in Colorado, Story hit .294/.363/.554 with 35 home runs, 85 RBI, 111 runs scored, and 23 stolen bases over 656 trips to the plate. He also continued to rank among the game’s best defensive shortstops. Per FanGraphs, Story’s 10.9 Wins Above Replacement over the last two seasons is fifth-best among shortstops (min. 1,000 PA) behind Alex Bregman, Francisco Lindor, Xander Bogaerts, and Marcus Semien.
With third baseman Nolan Arenado likely on his way out via trade, one wonders if the same fate awaits Story at some point over the next two seasons.