PITTSBURGH (AP) - Gerrit Cole took a shutout into the seventh inning of his major league debut and hit a two-run single in his first at-bat Tuesday night, leading the Pittsburgh Pirates to an 8-2 victory in front of a festive crowd.
The top pick in the 2011 draft, Cole allowed two runs and seven hits in 6 1-3 innings after being called up from Triple-A Indianapolis earlier in the day. He began his highly touted career with a three-pitch strikeout - all 96-mph fastballs - of Gregor Blanco and struck out two overall. He did not walk a batter.
Pedro Alvarez went 3 for 3 with a home run to back Cole. Starling Marte also homered and Andrew McCutchen and Russell Martin had two hits each.
Pittsburgh’s starter Gerrit Cole throws against San Francisco in the first inning of Tuesday’s game in Pittsburgh.
San Francisco put two runners on in the first and loaded the bases in the second against Cole (1-0) but failed to score in either inning.
Cole then set down 13 in a row, starting with Marco Scutaro's flyout to end the second. The Giants finally broke through in the seventh inning but the Pirates had built a 5-0 lead by then.
Many of the 30,614 in attendance cheered every move made by the pitcher who is expected to be the Pirates ace of the future.
The sizable crowd for a weekday game, though, caused problems for the organization, which instituted a new security measure for fans entering the stadium. The use of electronic wands slowed down the entrance procedure and Pirates President Frank Coonelly issued an apology during the game.
"We made the decision several weeks ago to enhance the security at the gates beginning with tonight's game, but unfortunately we failed in our preparation and execution. We stopped the wanding procedure at the start of the game and were able to clear the lines at the gates by the end of first inning," Coonelly said.
Cole snapped a scoreless tie when he lined a two-run single into right field in the second inning with one out and the bases loaded. Cole did not have hit during his two seasons in the minor leagues, going 0 for 6 with three strikeouts.
McCutchen walked with one and scored from first when right fielder Hunter Pence misplayed Garrett Jones' single on a low liner for a two-base error. Jones then scored on Alvarez's infield.
Marte's solo home run, his sixth, made it 5-0 in the sixth.
The Pirates answered again with three runs in the bottom of the seventh to increase the lead to 8-2. Martin singled in a run and Alvarez hit his two-run homer, his 14th.