Andrew McCutchen Sparks First Power Move of Winter Meetings

andrew mccutchen rounds bases with yankees

McCutchen secured a 3-year $50 million bag from the Philadelphia Phillies, who are also hunting Bryce Harper and Manny Machado.

The San Francisco Giants thought Andrew McCutchen’s ability to command long bread on the market had a short life span. A season after being dumped by the Pittsburgh Pirates after nine seasons as the face of the franchise, McCutchen proved his viability as a starting MLB outfielder with successful stints in San Francisco and with the Yankees in 2018.

In the first major move of MLB’s winter meetings, the Philadelphia Phillies agreed to terms with McCutchen on a three-year deal for a reported $50 million that also includes a team option.

McCutchen can still ball, he’s just not the same player who won the MVP in 2013, finished third in 2014 and led Pittsburgh’s rise from baseball’s Saigon into a contender, The 31-year-old had a line of  .255/.368/.424 with 20 home runs and 95 walks. Statistically, McCutchen ranks in a category with young stars such as Cody Bellanger and George Springer.  

The Phillies were lacking in corner outfield defense last year with Rhys Hoskins and Nick Williams. Defensively, Cutch is still a solid corner outfielder who boasted a plus-2 defensive runs saved in 2018.

 Adding McCutchen upgrades the position and doesn’t remove the Phillies from entering the Bryce Harper or Manny Machado sweepstakes.

 

Harper, Machado Talk  Heating Up 

The Phillies will have some stiff competition for Machado, who is set to visit them, the Yankees, Chicago White Sox and a fourth team in the near future according to MLB Network. Both are longshots. 

Harper seems to be more of a reality for the Phillies. The Dodgers are supposedly trying to shed some outfielders to clear up space for Harper. Yasiel Puig to the offensively inept Cincinnati Reds is one rumor circulating

But reports say the coveted outfielder likes the Phillies and the Giants. The Yankees have cooled on their pursuit of the former NL MVP, but don’t count them out just yet. After years of futility, the White Sox are all in with an 82-year-old owner who wants to win before he passes on. 

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The Mets and new general manager Brodie Van Wagenen set the free agent frenzy off by trading for Robinson Cano and young closer Edwin Diaz. Rumors regarding a deal for Seattle Marlins catcher JT Realmuto have surfaced and ace pitcher Noah Syndergaard has been mentioned as a possible piece in a three-way trade involving the Yankees who are willing to relinquish second-year third baseman Miguel Andujar in a trade for Syndergaard.

JR Gamble joined The Shadow League in 2012. The General Manager of Content & Social Media is in his 25th year of covering sports and culture professionally. He has covered a wide variety of major sports and entertainment topics across different mediums, including radio, newspapers, magazines and national TV. His passion is baseball, the culturing of baseball and preserving and documenting the historically-impactful accomplishments and contributions of African-Americans in baseball.