Gerrit Cole and Jose Berrios each began 2022 with starts that involved some frustrating moments before their respective offenses produced victories.
Both pitchers are hoping for improved results Wednesday night when the New York Yankees host the Toronto Blue Jays in the third game of a four-game series.
Cole and Berrios will oppose each other after the Yankees evened the series with a 4-0 win Tuesday night. Aaron Hicks hit a two-run homer while Nestor Cortes and four relievers combined on a five-hitter.
The Blue Jays will face Cole after their quietest performance at the plate. They totaled 23 runs and 38 hits through their first four games but struck out 10 times on Tuesday.
Cole (0-0, 6.75 ERA) allowed three runs on four hits in four innings in a no-decision against the Boston Red Sox in Friday's season opener. Cole fell behind 3-0 before getting a single out when he allowed a two-run homer to Rafael Devers and an RBI double to J.D. Martinez and took a no-decision when the Yankees won on Josh Donaldson's 11th-inning single.
After his season debut, Cole admitted the lengthy pregame ceremonies got him a little out of sorts. On Tuesday, he said he was too pumped up.
"Overall, my mechanics are in a good spot," Cole said. "I just had a lot of adrenaline and kind of spun my tires there for a minute, so I needed to find the rhythm and tempo to kind of stay within myself a little."
Cole threw 68 pitches to 17 hitters Friday and his pitch count should gradually increase until he is fully built up following the condensed spring training.
The right-hander is 5-1 with a 3.33 ERA in nine career starts against Toronto. Five of those were last season when he pitched a 3.72 ERA and Toronto hit .234 with six homers off him.
Berrios (0-0, 108.00) began his first full season with the Blue Jays by producing the shortest start of his career. Blue Jays pitchers have a 5.32 team ERA to start the season following the shortened exhibition season.
"It goes for every team," Toronto manager Charlie Montoyo said. "They haven't thrown as many as they used to with the regular Spring Training, so that just is what it is."
On Friday, Berrios retired just one of the seven hitters he faced and gave up four runs in that 1/3 of an inning. He took a no-decision when Toronto rallied for a 10-8 victory over the Texas Rangers after trailing 7-0.
Berrios was 5-4 with a 3.58 ERA in 12 starts after the Blue Jays acquired him from the Minnesota Twins.
"I was trying to be too perfect, like too nasty, and I didn't throw the ball over the plate," Berrios said Friday.
Berrios is 2-2 with a 4.73 ERA in five career starts against the Yankees. He was 1-0 with a 3.55 ERA in a pair of starts against New York last season.