PITTSBURGH (93-7 The Fan) -- Pittsburgh Pirates Pitcher Gerrit Cole joined The Cook and Poni Show on Friday to talk about his comeback and a great event he has coming up to benefit The Children's Institute and Pirates Charities.
Cole has been on the disabled list since mid-June with a right triceps injury but could be very close to re-joining the team.
"I'm feeling really good," Cole told the guys. "I'm excited to get back out there as soon as I can. I got another rehab start to take care of in a couple of days on Sunday and then we should be ready to go for the Nationals sometime after the break."
Cole admitted to the guys that it's been tough to watch because he wants to be out their helping this team.
"You want to get out there and compete," Cole added. "I mean either way, it's not easy. When the team is doing bad, you want to go out there because you want to help and when we're on a little bit of a streak like we're on right now, everybody is just having so much fun and you find yourself sitting on the bench saying... man, I just want to play with these guys, so that kind of eats at you a bit."
Cole says his rehab process has gone well and being cautious with the injury at first has helped in the ability to speed up his return.
"I think we have done everything right," Cole added. "So excited to toe it back up when I get the opportunity."
When Cole does return after the break he agrees with the guys that the focus for him and the rest of the starting pitchers has to be to go deeper in games to help the bullpen.
"Yeah, no doubt," Cole said. "We do want to see more length out of the rotation. I think it would balance out the distribution of innings, but we have guys who are giving us competitive shots in the arm, like Jameson before he went down, Chad Kull, Frankie is turning the corner, Jeff Locke is grinding and John Niese is too. It's tough to go out there and not have a good performance and 5 days later, you got to turn it back around, and these guys have been doing that, and it hasn't all gone our way, and it hasn't been easy at first but there is a lot of season left."
Cole has been focused on his return, but he is also working hard to get ready for his Uncork for a Cause charity program kicking off July 24th with a special event to raise awareness and funding for Pirates Charities and The Children's Institute.
Gerrit and his teammates along with other special guest will be at Hyde Park Prime Steakhouse on the North Shore from 7 to 9 p.m. which will also serve as the release party for his very own 2013 Sonoma Reserve Red Wine.
"I think it's pretty good," Cole told the guys. "I went in there with pretty high expectations and it's pretty good. I think the label is pretty good too. I did the best job I could trying to design that it and that's pretty neat."
Attendees to the event will enjoy an enticing culinary menu specially prepared by Hyde Park's award-winning kitchen plus open wine and beer bar, a complimentary bottle a Gerrit's 2013 Sonoma Red win and will be able to bid on great auction items from the Pirates. Local and national sports items, wine lots from some of California's elite producers plus unique travel opportunities to wine county.
"I'm really excited about it," Cole added. "Everybody's pretty excited about it. With all the proceeds going to such a good cause. Anytime you can give back it always makes you feel good."
For more information or to purchase tickets, visit Uncorkforacause.com.
Listen to the full interview with Gerrit on the Cook and Poni Show here:
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