As the sweepstakes for free agent pitchers Stephen Strasburg and Gerrit Cole heat up, it appears the Yankees have set their sights primarily on Cole. The Yankees are prepared to back up the Brink’s truck to give Cole a record-setting deal according to ESPN’s Jeff Passan.
Cole is still under thirty and coming off a great 2019 season, where he pitched 212.1 innings, striking out a league-leading 326 batters and holding down a 2.50 ERA and 0.895 WHIP in his seventh year in the league.
There are many suitors for Cole, but other than the Yankees, it appears the Angels are most willing to match the Yankees. David Price received the current record payday with a $217 million, 7-year contract, and predictions for Cole to reach above $250 million.
The Angels need pitching more than the Yankees, and Cole is from Southern California so they could have an edge, but the piles of money GM Brian Cashman can offer could be enough to draw him to New York. The Yankees had dealt with Cole when they drafted him out of high school and pursued him two years ago. They at least understand some of Cole’s thinking when it comes to committing to a team.