Pirates shut down ace Cole as playoff hopes fade

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Gerrit Cole will have to wait until 2017 to return to All-Star form after the Pittsburgh Pirates shut down their ace for the remainder of the season with playoff hopes all but lost. 

Cole, who spent two stints on the disabled list this season with triceps and elbow issues, was placed on the 60-day DL on Tuesday with right elbow posterior inflammation.

With just two wins over their last 10 games, the Pirates decided that Cole's future health was more important than a seemingly hopeless wildcard push as the team sit six games back in the race.

"I'm disappointed. There's just not enough time to recover," Cole said, via MLB.com.

"I'm disappointed I'm not out there to help the team. That's the one thing I've been fighting for all season, to try to be able to contribute to our ultimate goal. It's unfortunate we ran out of time."

Cole tried to pitch through the elbow inflammation but went 0-5 with a 8.37 ERA over his last five starts.

The right-hander began the season with Cy Young rumblings after winning 19 games with a 2.60 ERA as a 2015 All-Star, but will finish this season with a losing record for the first time in four seasons and career highs in ERA (3.88) and WHIP (1.44).