On Sunday, January 27 in front of family, friends, and alumni, Gerrit Cole, a starting pitcher for the Houston Astros, had his #10 jersey retired by the Orange Lutheran Baseball Program.
"I'm humbled that I was able to leave a lasting impact at the school," Cole said of his jersey retirement.
Gerrit pitched for the Lancer varsity team from 2005-2008. "It was a program that got enough recognition and played against top quality guys I didn't have to go out and get any extra exposure," Cole said.
Cole was drafted to the MLB directly out of Orange Lutheran in 2008 by the New York Yankees but ultimately decided to attend college at UCLA instead of pursuing a professional career at that time. After his junior year at UCLA, Gerrit was again drafted into the MLB this time #1 overall by the Pittsburgh Pirates. He now pitches for the Houston Astros after being traded during the 2018 off-season where he finished 5th in votes for the American League Cy Young.
Ultimately, Cole credits Orange Lutheran with shaping him as the person he is today. "The relationship aspect, the educational aspect, the competition, and instruction aspect, all played huge roles in the person I am today."
*Photo courtesy of Kitano Photography*by Dave Cacciapuoti