It’s not the “Cole” New York Yankees fans hoped for, but the Bronx Bombers added A.J. Cole to their pitching mix late Monday night.
The New York Yankees have gone out and acquired another pitcher—26-year-old right-hander A.J. Cole from the Washington Nationals. In exchange, the Yanks are sending cash considerations to the Nats.
The team made the move official shortly after trouncing the Minnesota Twins by a score of 14-1.
TRADE: The Yankees have acquired RHP A.J. Cole from the Nationals in exchange for cash considerations. Cole has been added to the 40-man roster and will be added to the 25-man roster. RHP David Hale was designated for assignment.
— Yankees PR Dept. (@YankeesPR) April 24, 2018
A fourth-round pick out of Oviedo (FL) High School in the 2010 First-Year Player Draft, Cole was, for years, ranked as one of the top 100 prospects in all of baseball.
But injuries and inconsistency have led to a mediocre career in the big leagues. Over parts of four seasons with the Nationals, the six-foot-five, 238-pound righty has gone 5-8 with a 5.32 ERA and 1.51 WHIP.
His biggest issue has been a penchant for serving up home runs. Opposing batters have taken him deep 22 times—including an MLB-worst six this season—in just 110 innings of work. That certainly doesn’t make you feel warm and fuzzy about his chances at Yankee Stadium.
Cole, who the Nationals designated for assignment over the weekend, may only stick with the Yankees for as long as Adam Warren remains sidelined. Warren, the team’s long reliever, was placed on the disabled list this past Saturday with a strained back.
It could be that the Yankees are concerned that Warren could miss more time than originally expected, prompting the move for another starter-turned-reliever. Or it could be that they believe Cole, under the tutelage of pitching coach Larry Rothschild, can rediscover the form that made him such a highly touted prospect.
Whatever the reason, it cost the Yankees nothing prospect-wise to add Cole to the pitching mix. If he gets things figured out in the Bronx, it’ll be one more move to add to general manager Brian Cashman‘s already impressive resume.
If not, it’ll be an afterthought in the grand scheme of things.