Report: Pirates' McCutchen expected to go on DL, may miss a month

The Pirates will reportedly be without Andrew McCutchen for several weeks.
The Pirates will reportedly be without Andrew McCutchen for several weeks. (USATSI)

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The Pirates are expected to place reigning NL MVP Andrew McCutchen on the 15-day disabled list with a severe oblique strain, reports Ron Cook of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. He could miss three weeks to a month according to Cook's source.

McCutchen left Sunday afternoon's game after taking a swing and grabbing his left side. Here's the play:

The Diamondbacks hit McCutchen with a pitch in his back and near his oblique on Saturday as retaliation for the Pirates accidentally hitting Paul Goldschmidt on Friday. Goldschmidt suffered a broken hand and is done for the year.

McCutchen had x-rays after being hit by the pitch and he told reporters everything came back clean. The oblique injury could be the result of the swing -- players pull obliques on swings all the time -- or it could be the result of the beaning. There's no real way to know.

McCutchen, 27, is hitting .311/.411/.536 (167 OPS+) with 32 doubles, 17 home runs, 67 RBI, 17 stolen bases and a league-leading 67 walks in 109 games this year. He's actually performing better than he did during his MVP campaign last summer.

The Pirates are currently a half-game back of the second wild-card spot and 1½ games back of the top spot in the NL Central, so losing arguably the best player in the NL for a month or so is devastating. There's no way to replace a player like McCutchen.

With McCutchen out, the Pirates figure to use Starling Marte in center field. He is currently on the seven-day concussion disabled list, but he's on a rehab assignment and could be activated soon. Gregory Polanco and Travis Snider are the team's corner outfield options.

CBS Sports Writer

Mike Axisa joined CBS Sports in 2013. He has been a member of the BBWAA since 2015 and has previously written about both fantasy baseball and real life baseball for,,,... Full Bio

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