By Derek Fogel

Houston (SPORTSRADIO 610) – The Astros introduced their newest starting pitcher Gerrit Cole to the Houston media Wednesday. He was acquired from the Pittsburgh Pirates in a trade Saturday. Cole found out he was on the move while celebrating his wife’s birthday, and thought it only made that weekend better.

“How do you ask for anything more than to be coming to the World Champions,” Gerrit said.

While the reception from most fans is very positive, there is some criticism towards his game which comes from the past two seasons that have not been equitable with his talent level. In 2015 he won 19 games, but in 2016 and 2017 he won 19 games combined. The change of scenery could help.

“I think it boils down to command. I think it boils down to executing pitches. So, there are a lot of contributing factors,” Cole said. “Try to soak up as much as I can from some of the veterans on this team and some of the really good players. I’m looking forward to working with Brian McCann. I’m looking forward to a new approach.”

Cole was the Opening Day starter for the Pirates last season, as was Justin Verlander for the Tigers and Dallas Keuchel for the Astros. Now with all of them on the same team, Manager A.J. Hinch has some decisions to make. It is the best headache a manager could ask for.

“Having as many options as possible is very important,” Hinch said. “I know there’s going to be a lot of questions on how we sort it out… The decisions, how to how to maximize everybody, is going to come in time.”

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