It’s not often you want to make things harder for a pitcher, but that’s exactly what Indianapolis Indians catcher Tony Sanchez said he did for right-hander Gerrit Cole during Monday’s International League baseball game at Frontier Field in Rochester, N.Y.
“I want him to work for the out. I want him to make sure he can throw his fastball to his arm side and get the fastball in to righties,” said Sanchez after Cole made his first of two scheduled rehab starts before potentially returning to the Major League rotation in Pittsburgh. “Instead of just going to the breaking ball and getting someone to swing over the top of it and making it easy for him, because the big leagues isn’t easy, I am not trying to make it as hard for him as possible. But once I saw how good he looked and how effortless everything was, I was like, ‘OK, I’m going to try to make it a little harder for him than normal.’”
Will Cleveland is a Rochester, N.Y.-based sportswriter. He covers lacrosse, high schools, and just about every other sport at the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle newspaper. He has contributed to Pirates Prospects since 2012.