As the 2017 hot stove continues to freeze over, there was a report that the San Francisco Giants are interested in Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Andrew McCutchen if they are unable to work out a trade with the National League’s Most Valuable Player Giancarlo Stanton.
McCutchen, who is an MVP himself, had a bounce back year in 2017 after a down year in 2016. He also slowed down in the field, showing less success in centerfield.
If the Giants were to trade for him, it is likely that he would play in right field where his defensive numbers are better.
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This would allow the Giants to upgrade at two positions while still being in the market for a centerfielder.
The best option in the organization is Steven Duggar, who is likely to start the year in Sacramento with the Triple-A Rivercats.
However, if the Giants don’t sign a free agent in the off-season or make a trade for a center fielder, it is possible that Duggar could win the job out of Spring Training.
As for McCutchen, he might be a better fit for the 2018 Giants than Stanton or other possible right fielders on the market.
He is owed $14.5 million next season, which is considerably less than what Stanton will earn. He is also in the final year of his contract, so the money saved could be even more important long term.
Also, with the lack of long-term security, it actually hurts the market value in a trade from the Pirates perspective, which helps the Giants.
With a farm system in need of an influx of youth, not having to give up much in return for a former MVP who hit 28 home runs and is entering his age 31 season is very intriguing.