Aaron Cook Shows Polished Pick-Off Moves, Wants to Force Red Sox Into ‘Hard Decision’

Aaron Cook Shows Polished Pick-Off Moves, Wants to Force Red Sox Into 'Hard Decision'FORT MYERS, Fla. –– So much for a minor league deal. After inking the low-risk contract in January, Aaron Cook is proving that he’s worthy of possibly contributing to the major league roster.

The sinkerballer made his latest case in Thursday’s 4-4 tie against the Yankees. In his second start of spring training, Cook tossed four innings, surrendering just four hits and two runs while striking out two batters.

“I felt like it was a great opportunity for me to come and prove myself,” Cook said. “I want to go out there, prove I’m healthy, throw strikes, take us deep into games and make it be a hard decision for them to make.”

With the outing, Cook, 33, continues to inch into contention for the No. 5 spot in the Red Sox starting rotation. The right-hander also kept the Yankees’ baserunners in check, picking off two of them with a deceptive slide-step.

“Playing in the National League for all those years, we worked really hard on controlling the running game,” Cook said. “I took a lot of pride in being able to do some of that on my own, take some of the pressure off the bench coach. I look for opportunities to use my quick move when I can, my slide step, try to give me the best chance of getting a double play.”

Cook tossed 48 pitches, 31 of them for strikes in the outing.

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