Gerrit Cole didn’t try to mask his displeasure about being yanked in the seventh inning of Wednesday’s loss to Tampa Bay. Not when Aaron Boone came to the mound to remove him from the tie game — and not later in the night when he addressed the media and declined to take Boone off the hook.
And Boone said he’s fine with and continues to love Cole’s competitive fire.
“At different times over the course of the year, you’ve got to make a tough decision or a decision that’s best for the team and for [the player],’’ Boone said before Thursday’s 10-5 loss to the Rays. “And sometimes those aren’t gonna be popular with the player. We’re gonna agree a lot, and every once in a while we’re gonna disagree. And that’s part of the sport.”
Wednesday’s game was the reason the Yankees signed Cole to a nine-year, $324 million deal, and the right-hander was dominant for much of the outing, but he allowed two solo homers and was at 109 pitches when Boone pulled him in favor of Zack Britton, who finished the inning before he faltered in the eighth.
“I was in good position to finish it,’’ Cole said Wednesday following the game. “[Boone] made the move before he even got out there, so it didn’t really matter whatever I said to him on the mound. What I said in my glove I will leave it at that.’’
Boone said he and Cole speak frequently, both when he’s pitching and on other days, and the manager didn’t have a problem with anything the right-hander did or said.
“I never get upset when guys care about their craft and care about us and the team and the game,’’ Boone said. “I think that’s what we saw from Gerrit. He’s as good a competitor as there is. He’s an ace in this spot. I love the fact he wants the ball. When you’re playing for a lot, sometimes that spills over, the emotion, when there’s a lot on the line. I really don’t have an issue with it.”
Luke Voit homered in a fourth straight game Thursday. It’s the second time he’s homered in four straight games, the other being the final three games of 2018 and first of 2019. He also has five homers in the four games, as well as six in his past eight. … All five of Gio Urshela’s homers have come at home. The third baseman also snapped an 0-for-11 stretch with a double in the third inning.
With the news the Yankees game against the Mets at Citi Field was postponed due to COVID cases with the Mets, Boone said he would stay with J.A. Happ as his starter if the teams are able to play Saturday.