On Monday, the Pittsburgh Pirates sent veteran outfielder Andrew McCutchen to the San Francisco Giants for Kyle Crick a right-hander, Bryan Reynolds an outfielder in the minors and $500,000 toward its allocation for international signing bonuses. Pittsburgh will also send cash to the Giants for some of the $14.75 million salary of McCutchen.
The EVP of Baseball Operations at the Giants Brian Sabean said everyone knows we are looking to add run production to the lineup. Anytime an opportunity comes along to bring in a player with such a proven track record, you need to take advantage of it.
McCutchen, who is 31, is a former MVP in the National League and the face of the Pittsburgh franchise and is the second Pirates starter traded in three days, as ace Gerrit Cole was sent to Houston Saturday.
Bob Nutting the chairman of the Pirates said the trade of McCutchen was one of the most agonizing emotionally that the organization has had to do during his tenure.
Nutting said that McCutchen created many memories both on the field and off it for him, the organization and its fans. He did all that while carrying himself with dignity, grace and humility added Nutting.
Earlier during the offseason, San Francisco acquired Evan Longoria a veteran third baseman from the Tampa Bay Rays. McCutchen, the NL MVP in 2013, will start in center, after the Giants traded Denard Span to the Rays in the deal for Longoria.
San Francisco wants to receive more production as well as strong defense from the center field position, after finishing last a season ago in the NL West.
San Francisco is hoping that McCutchen will help increase the production of the outfield that lacks a veteran beyond Hunter Pence, who himself tweeted to welcome McCutchen late Monday.
McCutchen has been durable during his entire career. He has played no fewer than 153 games in each of the last three seasons for Pittsburgh, while batting .279, with 28 homers and 88 RBIs in 2017 across 156 games.
However, he has not been picked to play in the All-Star Game for the past two seasons after playing for five consecutive seasons in the mid-Summer classic.
McCutchen will enter the sixth and final season of his current deal worth $51.5 billion he signed in 2012. The deal ended up being a bargain for the Pirates as he powered the turnaround at Pittsburgh.
Pittsburgh has dropped back behind the Cubs and Cardinals the past two seasons in the very competitive NL Central, in which Milwaukee led or threatened most of last season.