Pirates owner Nutting: Cole decision won't be based on money
Pirates owner Bob Nutting was adamant that any decision general manager Neal Huntington makes about prized pitcher Gerrit Cole's future will not be based on money.
“I'm like any fan in the ballpark,” Nutting said Tuesday. “I love watching Gerrit pitch. It's been remarkable what he's been able to do. And I really do believe that these decisions have to be based on when the player is ready, what are the needs of the team. It's not any arbitrary timeline or deadline. These are decisions based on baseball and on having the team execute at the highest possible level.”
Cole, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2011 draft, is off to a 3-0 start with a 3.44 ERA, but Huntington has strongly suggested in recent days that Cole might be returned to the minors once A.J. Burnett and Wandy Rodriguez rejoin the rotation.
That's led to a public outcry that the Pirates' primary purpose for demoting Cole would be to save money. If Cole gets enough major league service time in 2013, he could be eligible for Super 2 status that grants players an extra year of arbitration eligibility. That would cost the Pirates millions of dollars down the road.
Huntington has denied Super 2 would be a variable, and Nutting backed that.
“We've been criticized for rushing players, and we've been criticized for bringing players up too slowly,” Nutting said. “I recognize that there's never a perfect time. But what was critical for Gerrit was that he was ready to perform when he came to Pittsburgh. He's been given an opportunity. And frankly, I think it's pretty exciting that we're in a position that this kind of a decision has to be made because of how well our pitchers have pitched. We have some really challenging decisions.”
The Pirates have said Cole is set to make his next scheduled start, Friday at PNC Park against Milwaukee.
Dejan Kovacevic is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter @Dejan_Kovacevic.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Pirates notebook: Morton hopes to return this season
- Braves’ error, Sanchez’s sacrifice fly in 9th help Pirates snap long skid
- Pirates notebook: Hurdle weighs trio at 1st base
- Pirates notebook: Team claims Indians’ Axford off waivers
- Pirates notebook: Cole on track for return to starting rotation
- Pirates notebook: Morton placed on DL; backup infielder Morel recalled
- Tuesday’s scouting report: Braves at Pirates
- Pirates’ McCutchen expects to play Tuesday; Alvarez to start at 1B