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#pounditFriday, June 25, 2021

Gerrit Cole effectively admits to using banned substances

Gerrit Cole

Gerrit Cole effectively admitted on Tuesday to using banned substances while pitching.

Cole was asked by reporter Ken Davidoff whether he has used Spider Tack, a sticky substance, while pitching. The question came two days after being accused by Josh Donaldson of cheating.

The New York Yankees pitcher hemmed and hawed and admitted he didn’t know how to answer the question.

Cole wrestling with the question, and not denying his usage of the substance, was telling.

Instead of talking about the customs of things being passed down by older players, Cole should just tell it straight. Just tell everyone that many pitchers use the substances, that they give huge advantages, and that you are not an exception. Trevor Bauer has been clear that pitchers in MLB are using foreign substances. He has asked for MLB to deliver a clear policy about whether they will enforce the rules equally or not.

Cole would have been best served doing the same thing instead of dancing around. The 30-year-old ace was the No. 1 pick in the 2011 draft. He ranged from good to excellent with the Pittsburg Pirates, but he hit another level upon being traded to the Houston Astros. Since then, he has been dominant and finished in the top five of Cy Young Award voting every year. There is heavy speculation that he began using foreign substances (at least to a greater degree) in Houston, which aided his success.

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