Pittsburgh Pirates all-world outfielder Andrew McCutchen just padded his NL MVP resume with more honors.
Yes, Cutch took home August player of the month honors and rightfully so, as those stats above suggest. The Pittsburgh Pirates were 19-8 in an August that saw them remain within theoretical striking distance of the St. Louis Cardinals for the NL Central title.
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Many would say this should have been McCutchen’s second such award. Considering an almost-equally torrid May (as you’ll see below), a statement like that is beyond plausible. That award went to Bryce Harper, who was perhaps more deserving based on statistics alone.
We’ve previously talked about Cutch’s MVP chances. While awards like this certainly do not help, it would appear that this year’s MVP race will finally bring a battle of philosophies to the surface. We’ve stated before that Harper is a legitimate candidate on a team that has not lived up to the promise of their pre-season hype and may miss the playoffs altogether. Buster Posey remains a perennial candidate, but if the Giants do not make the playoffs, he may be left out. All of this is pushing the debate forward as to the meaning of the MVP award. Of course, with a month left in the season, one candidate may go on a tear, rending all of this talk moot.
With the steady increase in production month-to-month, betting on McCutchen to win the honor might not be a bad bet at all.
Here are McCutchen’s month-by-month statistics: