There can be no denying when you look at Starling Marte and Andrew McCutchen that they are both loaded full of talent, classic examples of five tool players. While Andrew McCutchen has developed into not just an MVP candidate, but arguably the best player in baseball, we haven’t seen a whole lot of Marte yet, so he can be a little bit tougher to judge. Because of this, we’re going to compare Starling Marte’s 162 game average over his first two seasons (a total of sixty games thus far), and Cutch’s first full season in the big leagues, to get a look at who showed better over the early parts of their career.
Andrew McCuthen’s first full season came in 2010, even though he first appeared in the league in 2009, the sample size there isn’t really good enough to get a look at. In 2010, Cutch posted a triple slash of .286/.365/.449, hitting sixteen home runs, and knocking in fifty-six RBI. He spent the majority of that season in the same role Marte currently occupies, hitting leadoff. Starling Marte has played in sixty games in his career so far, but over those sixty games, here’s the numbers (averaged out for a 162 game season): .285/.325/.457, with sixteen home runs, and sixty-eight RBI. This of course isn’t a guarantee, but it’s the best we’re able to tell so far, based off of his previous production.
April 14, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates center fielder Andrew McCutchen (22) hits an RBI double against the Cincinnati Reds during the seventh inning at PNC Park. The Pittsburgh Pirates won 10-6. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Marte has shown a lot of talent, and he’s certainly fun to watch. The only real differences we can see between him and McCutchen is that while Marte is a little bit more of a free swinger, McCutchen has always had a lot of discipline at the plate, even to a fault. Surprisingly enough, it looks like Marte’s early career numbers surpass those of McCutchen’s. Whether or not he can continue this has still yet to be seen, but I don’t expect him to catch up to Andrew during his career. It’s not likely, but we’d love to see that, and we certainly hope Marte keeps swinging a hot bat like he has at the start of this season, and keeps developing into the player we know he can be.