Selecting first overall for just the fourth time in the MLB Draft, the Pittsburgh Pirates selected UCLA RHP Gerrit Cole on Monday night. Cole is considered by many to be the top pitcher available in the draft, but his teammate, Trevor Bauer, also takes the top spot on some lists.
Cole has reached 99 mph on the gun for his fastball, while his slider can reach 90 and his changeup goes to around 87. It's unlikely he will pitch much, if at all, this summer. Negotiations could take right up until the August 15 deadline.
The Pirates' previous first over all selections have been Jeff King, Kris Benson and Bryan Bullington. King played eight years for the Pirates and hit 88 career home runs before moving to the Royals for the last few years of his career. Benson has been underwhelming in his career, posting a 70-75 record and a 4.42 ERA. Bullington has by far been the worst of the three, pitching for five different teams. He picked up his first career win in 2010 with the Kansas City Royals.
Cole may have more than enough to be pitching in Pittsburgh in a year or two. Maybe the Pirates are ready for some good fortune.