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Blog Entry

Pirates lock up McCutchen to 6-year, $51.5 M deal

Posted on: March 5, 2012 8:02 am
Edited on: March 5, 2012 10:58 am
 
Andrew McCutchen

By C. Trent Rosecrans


The Pirates have locked up center fielder Andrew McCutchen to a six-year, $51.5 million contract, CBSSports.com insider Jon Heyman confirms.

The 25-year-old McCutchen made his first All-Star team in 2011 and was scheduled to be arbitration eligible after this season. The new deal buys out not only his three arbitration years, but also two free agent seasons and gives the Pirates a club option for another, giving Pittsburgh control over him through the 2018 season.

The deal is similar to the one NL Central rival Jay Bruce (six years, $51 million) signed a year ago with the Reds and the one Justin Upton signed before the 2010 season (six years, $51.25 million) with the Diamondbacks.

It also assures the Pirates will be able to build around the young star. Last season, McCutchen's batting average dropped, but his on-base percentage stayed steady and his home run and RBI totals jumped, as he emerged as one of the young stars of the game. McCutchen hit .259/.364/.456 with 23 homers and 89 RBI in 2011, while stealing 23 bases. Overall, he's hit .276/.365/.458 in three seasons in Pittsburgh, while playing a solid center field.

This is the type of move that helps the Pirates more than most teams. Pittsburgh has lost many of its young, talented players to free agency. This proactive move keeps McCutchen in Pittsburgh and allows Pirate fans a piece of mind that he'll be around in the long term. It also gives McCutchen a big payday before he would otherwise be eligible.

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Comments

Since: Aug 7, 2008
Posted on: March 5, 2012 8:19 pm
 

Pirates lock up McCutchen to 6-year, $51.5 M deal

Looks like the Pirates are doing some things right here with their roster. They've kept some young talent rather than trading those pieces like usual and have some veterans to help develop their young guys. McCutchen is gonna be in his prime this whole contract so he should only improve yearly. I know he hasn't performed to his potential but I think AJ Burnett will be a nice presence this year for the Pirates in a weaker division than last year. I hope they can jump the Reds and Cards



Since: Aug 12, 2007
Posted on: March 5, 2012 7:58 pm
 

Pirates lock up McCutchen to 6-year, $51.5 M deal

GREAT MOVE, this team can win this YEAR! Keeping the nucleus of young players will pay benefits soon. I was always tired of all the players we just gave awat BAUTISTA not too long ago. GO BUCS



Since: Aug 21, 2006
Posted on: March 5, 2012 4:59 pm
 

Pirates lock up McCutchen to 6-year, $51.5 M deal

Good move for them. They have not traded any real talent away in over two years either, they seem to be back on the right track.



Since: Jan 18, 2012
Posted on: March 5, 2012 3:28 pm
 

Pirates lock up McCutchen to 6-year, $51.5 M deal

hands down the safest investment made this off season



Since: Jan 29, 2010
Posted on: March 5, 2012 2:35 pm
 

Pirates lock up McCutchen to 6-year, $51.5 M deal

This was a necessary move for a number of reasons, and for all the "overrated" comments, you guys either need to actually watch more than 10 baseball games in the last 3 seasons...

1)  This was necessary for a Franchise to compete.  You always need a cornerstone to build around, and now with McCutchen and Tabata locked up, they are in a position to continue to build and move forward.

2)  This was necessary to eliminate the "Pirates" tag and actually seperate this regime (NH, Nutting and Co.) from the other regimes of the past (McClatchy/Littlefield) and their cheap wallets.

3)   The organization has done well spending money when it is necessary, for necessary talent.  They havent blown money on overpriced Vets, or unaccomplished FA.  They have invested money in talented young players via the draft, but as they are becoming a contender (and the elimination of overslot bonuses in the CBA), more money can be put towards being compeitive.

4) The Pirates with McCutchen have a much greater chance of winning then the Pirates without McCutchen.



McCutchen has always boasted a solid OBP, has very good blend of Speed and Power, and plays solid Defense.  He has very comparable to stats and talent to Justin Upton.  With added talent, he can be a very very productive player and can help produce more Wins and make the team competitive among the NL ranks, and maybe in a couple years with more help, a playoff contender.  Be excited Pittsburgh, we are at least taking another step in the right direction, and trust that we have the right guys in charge for once. 



Since: Sep 1, 2006
Posted on: March 5, 2012 2:22 pm
 

Pirates lock up McCutchen to 6-year, $51.5 M deal

Unless they lock up the rest of their young talent...Pedro Alvarez and Neil Walker in particular...this signing is a waste. McCutcheon is one of the best young players in the game, but he's not good enough to carry them by himself. It's a GREAT start for Pittsburgh though! I think they recognize now's the time to make a move that that NL Central with St. Louis and Milwaukee both looking to be down a bit this year.



Since: Jan 26, 2009
Posted on: March 5, 2012 1:57 pm
 

Pirates lock up McCutchen to 6-year, $51.5 M deal

This is the move Pirate fans have been asking for for the past year.  I'm glad they finally got it done.  Andrew McCutchen is worth every cent.  This signing is a great baseball move, unlike the Jason Kendall signing, which I saw as a PR move as the Buccos moved into PNC Park. 

As far as where the Pirates got the $$$, let's not forgot they have spent the most in the draft over the past three years.  They made a significant upgrade to their Latin American facilities.  And they also made a large investment in Luis Heredia.  The money has been there and will continue to be there (they just raised ticket prices and attendance is rising)  With the changes in the CBA, limiting the amount spent on the draft, the Pirates said they would have extra funds that would have normally been ticketed for the draft.  They said these funds would go back into the major league team.  Well, looks like they are keeping their word. 

Up next...Neil Walker!



Since: Sep 19, 2011
Posted on: March 5, 2012 1:50 pm
 

Pirates lock up McCutchen to 6-year, $51.5 M deal

What?????? Did I read the headlines right? Pirates lock up McCutcheon. What happened to the old poor Pirates that could not afford anyone. Good for them and for McCutcheon.
Yeah I agree, I am shock that the Pirates is going to hold to a good player



Since: Jun 5, 2011
Posted on: March 5, 2012 1:47 pm
 

Pirates lock up McCutchen to 6-year, $51.5 M deal

I can see both the positives and negatives of this move.  I'm going to lean more toward the positive, glass is half full side.  The main reason being that the Pirates have given us long time fans some solid HOPE.  They've drafted power pitchers, locked up a good young core group of players and now have signed their "franchise" guy to a fair deal.  I still have my fingers crossed but now I'm definately feeling better about this team and HOPE the past 20 years are just that, in the past.  I'm going to go out and buy myself a McCutchen jersey and wear it proudly.  Go Bucs!



Since: Mar 2, 2008
Posted on: March 5, 2012 1:36 pm
 

Pirates lock up McCutchen to 6-year, $51.5 M deal

Probably getting traded away, just like Kendell did, in two more seasons.  The people of Pittsburgh needs to treasure this valuable time, before the inevitable swerve comes.


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com