Cole departed during the fourth inning after throwing 70 pitches on the evening. It’s worth noting that he motioned toward the dugout for the trainers after delivering his final pitch.
Cole’s final line saw him work 3 2/3 innings, allow three runs (all earned) on five hits and two walks, and strike out two batters while delivering 46 of his 70 pitches (that’s 65.7 percent) for strikes. His fastball averaged 97.9 mph on the night, or slightly above his seasonal average of 97.7 mph.
Manager Aaron Boone replaced Cole with rookie right-hander Albert Abreu.
Cole entered Tuesday night with a 2.73 ERA (156 ERA+) and a 6.72 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 155 innings this season. Tuesday marked his 26th start of the year. Cole had notched a quality start in each of his last three outings, and he had not allowed more than one run in a start (prior to Tuesday, anyway) since July 29. His last time out, against the Los Angeles Angels, he struck out 15 batters in seven innings of work.
New York is already without a number of key contributors due to injuries, including starters Luis Severino and Domingo Germán; relievers Zack Britton and Jonathan Loaisiga; and outfielders Aaron Hicks and Clint Frazier.
The Yankees came into Tuesday with a 78-59 record on the season, giving them a half-game lead over the Boston Red Sox for the top wild card spot in the American League. The Yankees, additionally, are 3 1/2 games up on the Blue Jays and the Seattle Mariners, providing them with breathing room that they may end up requiring if Cole’s injury necessitates an absence.