March 09, 2015

BRADENTON, Fla. (AP) Gerrit Cole was happy to talk about his hitting.

After giving up a long home run to Miguel Sano in the second inning, Cole led off the third with a double to the left-field wall in the Pittsburgh Pirates' 1-1 tie against the Minnesota Twins on Monday.

Cole advanced on Alex Meyer's wild pitch and was stranded when Sterling Marte struck out with the bases loaded.

''I hit it pretty good and got into second base cleanly,'' Cole said. ''I don't think they were too worried about me going for a triple.''

Cole gave up three hits in three innings.

''I made some good pitches that I didn't necessarily get rewarded for,'' Cole said. ''There were a couple of times that I got out of sync but I was able to get it back. I think getting two or three innings and feeling strong and feeling like I could have gone another inning is a good sign too.''

Andrew McCutchen and Neil Walker hit consecutive doubles in the first against Ricky Nolasco.

Sano, 21, is a top Twins prospect who missed last season following elbow ligament-replacement surgery.

''I was trying to be aggressive and get the ball down in the zone,'' Cole said. ''I just saw the barrel there before the ball got there. I knew it wasn't going to end up pretty for me.''

Radhames Liz, Arquimedes Caminero, Charlie Leesman, Angel Sanchez and Wilfredo Boscan combined to strike our four over six innings.


Twins: Closer Glen Perkins cut short a bullpen session after five pitches after feeling a ''tweak'' on his right side. General manager Terry Ryan said he was not concerned.

Pirates: First baseman Pedro Alvarez took part in infield drills Monday but remains day to day with a sore right elbow.


Twins: Nolasco allowed two hits in two innings, struck out three and walked none.

Pirates: Cole struck out two and walked two.


Twins: Kyle Gibson is to make his second start of spring training Tuesday against Toronto at Dunedin.

Pirates: Francisco Liriano is slated to start against Tampa Bay at Port Charlotte.

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