Houston Astros: Gerrit Cole needs to be ready to start Game 6 if necessary

Houston Astros pitcher Gerrit Cole (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
Houston Astros pitcher Gerrit Cole (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /

Houston Astros pitcher Gerrit Cole pitched a gem in Game 3 but should be ready to start Game 6 if necessary. Why? Let’s dive into this scenario.

The Houston Astros will get an unexpected day off as inclement weather is currently rolling through the Big Apple and it will stay that way for the rest of the day.  There’s close to a 100 percent chance of precipitation that will take place around Yankee Stadium, literally putting a damper to both team’s plans to compete in Game 4.

This extra day will be beneficial for both teams as they will continue to stick with their three-man rotations and will have to rely less on the bullpen, which at least, was going to be the case for the Houston Astros.

I had proposed that Brad Peacock be tapped as the starter if Game 4 were to go today as scheduled but since that won’t be happening, this day off will push Zack Greinke back into the rotation and he will be able to start Game 4 tomorrow off full rest.

AJ Hinch has already announced that his Greinke will start Game 4 and Justin Verlander will start in Game 5 which will be played Thursday (7:08 p.m. CDT) and Friday (6:08 p.m. CDT) in New York to make up for today’s postponement.

With starting rotation set for the next two games now the schedule is set in stone and we have an idea of how the weather will play out in New York, it’s time to start thinking about if Game 6 will be necessary.

The Yankees are trailing in this series now and they are going to do everything they can to climb back into this competition with a vengeance.  I would love nothing more than for the Houston Astros to win the next two games and come back home ready to play in a World Series but with as good as their competition is, you have to think about all of the realms of possibilities.

It’s extremely feasible that this team will be playing a potential Game 6 in Houston and you know what?

I want Gerrit Cole on the bump as the starter for that game.  He will have only had three full days of rest but there’s nobody that I trust more to get the job done than the guy that essentially saved the Houston Astros‘ season in ALDS Game 5 and the guy that kept things steady in last night’s Game 3 bout with the Yanks.

Although Cole walked a season-high five guys in last night’s tilt, he still tossed eight strikeouts in seven innings of shutout ball, showing that he can remain resilient no matter the situation.

The situation should be treated like with Verlander in Game 4 of the ALDS, have either Peacock or

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Jose Urquidy ready to step in finish the game if Cole’s velocity is down or if he just quite have the stuff that he needs to get through a few innings of work.  I would hope that he’d be able to go at least five but certainly depends on how he’d feel starting in potential Game 6.

He threw 112 pitches last night and if Hinch asked him to start Saturday night, he’d probably say yes in a heartbeat.  He’s the type of fierce competitor that will lay it all on the line to help this team win and I think he can still be effective, albeit not as much as if he’d had full rest.

But a 75 to 80 percent physically-ready Cole is better than a lot of talent of other rosters in MLB so I think it’s a sound move for Hinch to at least consider this notion.

This may sting them a bit if the Houston Astros make it to the World Series but they’ll deal with that then, the main objective is for this team to get out of the series as winners and I think Cole is, once again, going to be the man to be able to help this team do that.

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The chain of events over the course of the next few days is going to be interesting and things can go in either direction but I’m wishing nothing for the best for this team get through this challenging situation coming out smelling like a rose.

We’ll have to keep an eye — let’s go Houston Astros!