#1 – Outfielder Andrew McCutchen
Was there ever any doubt? The best Pirate player of the decade, and one of the five best players in franchise history, is Andrew McCutchen. Hell, he was a unanimous number 1 receiving every 1st place vote. If not for knee issues, odds are, McCutchen would find himself with a bust in Cooperstown one day.
The 2013 National League MVP was a five-time All-Star, four-time Silver Slugger Award winner, he won a Gold Glove in 2012, and the Roberto Clemente Award in 2015. Topping his 2013 MVP season, he had one of the best seasons in Pirate history in 2014 when he posted a 168 wRC+.
Cutch was not just a great baseball player, he was the face of the franchise. He was the face of the Pirates turnaround and rise back to prominence. He was also one of us. He married a local girl, he embraced and loved Pittsburgh every bit as much as the city loved him, he still lives here in the off-season, and he named his first son Steel. There are few players in franchise history more popular and beloved than Cutch.
From 2010-2017, McCutchen’s 42.3 fWAR was behind just Buster Posey and Joey Votto among NL position players. In nine seasons as a Pirate (2009-2017) he slashed .291/.379/.487 with a 137 wRC+. His 203 home runs ranks 4th all-time in Pirate history.
There may never again be a professional athlete I love as much as I did Cutch. Everything he did for the Pirates and for Pittsburgh may never again be matched. Combine this with being one of the best players in baseball from the last decade, and he is the best Pirate player of the 2010s.