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#pounditFriday, December 4, 2020

Gerrit Cole becomes second fastest ever to reach 200 strikeouts in a season

Gerrit Cole

Gerrit Cole reached a momentous milestone during Monday’s game between the Houston Astros and Oakland A’s.

Cole entered the game leading Major League Baseball with 194 strikeouts through his first 21 starts of the season. During the fourth inning, Cole got Matt Olson to strike out swinging for strikeout No. 200, making him the second fastest to accomplish the feat in a season.

The only pitcher to do it quicker was Hall of Famer Randy Johnson in 2001. Johnson finished with a career-high 372 strikeouts that season.

Since joining the Astros last season, Cole has taken his game to another level. In 2018, he posted an ERA of 2.88 with 276 strikeouts in 200.1 innings.

Cole isn’t the only pitcher who has experienced success since joining the Astros. Justin Verlander credited the use of technology with improving his slider two years ago in his first season in Houston. Perhaps Cole is putting it to good use as well.

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