Andrew McCutchen Finding a Trade Partner Series

Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /

Editorial: With the off-season already kicking off it is time to start paying attention to all the rumors leading up to the Winter Meetings.  The biggest rumor that will surround the Pittsburgh Pirates will be regarding Andrew McCutchen.

Toward the end of the Pittsburgh Pirates season many started to question if it would be Andrew McCutchen‘s final season in Pittsburgh.  Many believe that Andrew McCutchen is disgruntled here in Pittsburgh and that it would benefit both sides to split ways.  From the Pirates side it makes sense.  They can trade him while he still has relatively high value, regardless of him having a down season.  They can also acquire a nice package of players back with some who could contribute in 2017 while others down the road.

However, the other driving force behind the idea of trading Cutch is that they have top prospect in Austin Meadows who could be up in June of 2017.  With many holes to fill this off-season, a soon to be pending free agent who seems disgruntled, and a MLB ready prospect it could make sense to deal Andrew McCutchen.

Let us start off with what we know.  First off he is coming off the worst year of his stellar career.  Andrew McCutchen has been an all-star five times in his career spanning from 2011 to 2015.  He also had finished top five in MVP voting every year from 2012 through 2015.  This includes when he brought home the honor for the 2013 season.  McCutchen is a career .292 hitter with a lifetime .869 OPS.  In short Andrew McCutchen has been one of the best players in baseball for most of his career.

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Now everyone knows McCutchen struggled in the 2016 season.  However, this should have little effect on his trade value.  First off it was one year out of an outstanding eight year career thus far.  Second, he still is locked up very cheaply in terms of the quality player a team would be receiving.  The Pittsburgh Pirates center fielder is due 14.5 million for the 2017 season and has a club option for the same through 2018.  So really, baring an even more extreme digression of his numbers he likely will be controlled cheaply for two more seasons.  Also, many expect the former MVP to bounce back in 2017 and will likely be worth the 29 million dollars remaining on his contract.

So if the Pittsburgh Pirates do decide to trade Andrew McCutchen what teams are a trade fit?  Well going forward Rum Bunter will be doing numerous articles on the topic.  This will include any rumors that are out there.  This will also include analyzing a number of teams around the league that would make the most sense to have pull a deal of for McCutchen.  Here is a list of the teams that will be analyzed over the month of November:

Cleveland Indians

Toronto Blue Jays

Los Angeles Dodgers

New York Yankees

Seattle Mariners

New York Mets

Philadelphia Phillies

San Francisco Giants

Next: Will Austin Meadows reach the Majors in 2017?

This is a list of teams that will have articles done on them over the month of November. Some of these teams have already been rumored to be interested in Cutch while others make sense as they need outfield help.  Chances are if Andrew McCutchen is going to get traded it will be at the Winter Meetings.  The Winter Meetings will be held December 4-8.  This will allow Rum Bunter plenty of time to find the team that makes the most sense to trade with!

Also stats from Baseball Reference