Photo by Allen Kee / ESPN Images(HOUSTON) — One day after an awkward exchange with a Houston Astros employee, free agent pitcher Gerrit Cole thanked the Astros and their fans on Twitter Thursday.”Last night was a tough one for us and the heartbreak hasn’t gotten any easier today,” Cole said in his post. “Before I became an Astro I didn’t know much about Houston, but after just two years you have made it feel like home.””So here’s what I know now,” Cole continued. “You have been overwhelmingly friendly, welcoming, and kind to my family and me. The Astros organization has been such a pleasure to play for, the Cranes are indeed special people and great owners. I’ve met lifelong friends on the team and in the community and learned a little about pitching along the way.”Cole was dominant for nearly the entire season, striking out 326 batters, recording 16 wins and leading the American League with a 2.50 ERA. He and teammate Justin Verlander are considered the front runners for the AL Cy Young Award.Asked after Game Seven of the World Series to speak to reporters, Cole told a team official that he was “not employed by the team,” and began his interviews with “I guess as a representative of myself.”Cole’s contract ended after the World Series. He is expected to be one of the most sought-after free agents this offseason. He is represented by Scott Boras, and is likely to get a big contract on the free agent market.Copyright © 2019, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.