Cole will face the San Francisco Giants in his MLB debut Tuesday.
Player comparisons can give fans a lot to dream on. One popular comparison for Pirates' top pitching prospect Gerrit Cole has been Justin Verlander. It's easy to understand because there are plenty of similarities.
Cole is 6-foot-4, 240 pounds, was the No. 1 overall draft pick with an $8 million bonus and became a Baseball America top 10 prospect with a fastball in the high-90s. Verlander is 6-foot-5, 225 pounds, was the No. 2 overall draft pick in 2004 and was Baseball America's number 8 prospect in 2004, also with a fastball in the high-90s. Both the pedigree and the physical qualities lent naturally to such a comparison. Verlander has had a very successful Major League career, with the 4th-most wins above replacement among pitchers since his debut in 2005.
Another similar pitcher to Cole is John Patterson, who was selected No. 5 overall by the Montreal Expos in 1996. He became a free agent after the Expos for...
James covers the Pirates beat for Pirates Prospects. He is a Broadcast Journalism student at USC and has written for such outlets as NBCOlympics.com, Pittsburgh Magazine and the official websites of the Los Angeles Clippers and Pittsburgh Penguins. James previously covered the Pirates for Pittsburgh Sports Report. He also broadcasts play-by-play for the USC Trojans baseball team and was awarded the 2013 Chick Hearn Memorial Scholarship and Allan Malamud Scholarship. James dispenses puns at his Twitter account (@JamesSantelli) where he promises to write in first-person.