Another day and another rumor about Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Andrew McCutchen. This time it is the Toronto Blue Jays.
Although Pittsburgh Pirates General Manager Neal Huntington said an Andrew McCutchen trade was unlikely, there are still rumors. This is because there are still several teams looking for outfield help. With the rising prices of free agents, Andrew McCutchen is a bargain at his modest 28.5 million dollars over the next two seasons. Although at this point the team with the most to offer, the Nationals, are out of the bidding, the Mets and now the Blue Jays have been recently kicking the tires on Cutch.
The Blue Jays are looking to replace multiple hitters they lost this off-season. Their best right-handed hitter, Edwin Encarnacion, went to Cleveland. They also have two outfielders from 2016 who are now free agents. Right now it seems that Jose Bautista is going to be getting anywhere from 13-15 million dollars. Bautista is also coming off of a down season and is much older than Cutch. The Blue Jays might feel it is more logical to acquire a younger player and one who is more likely to bounce back to his career normals. Not to mention looking at the Jays outfield, they currently have Melvin Upton Jr. Kevin Pillar, and Ezequiel Carrera from left to right. Although they are nice players, none really represent an impact player. Carrera is better as a fourth outfielder and Melvin Upton still has a lot of questions about his consistency.
Meanwhile the Blue Jays are a team that feel their window of opportunity is now. Although they are losing some of their top players, the Blue Jays still feel they are in World Series contention. This is mainly supported by their moves a few seasons ago when they acquired Troy Tulowitzki and others. The Blue Jays traded away a lot of their upper level prospects. They also have added some veteran players this off-season like Kendrys Morales and Steve Pearce. Essentially they would not be adding veteran players on significant contracts if they were trying to rebuild. The Jays know if they try to rebuild it is going to be a longer commitment because they do not have a lot top prospects in the upper minors.