Andrew McCutchen, the 2013 National League MVP, is now a Yankee. The word that he used to describe it was “surreal.”
“You play this game, we all know the history here and to see the news and to hear it, that I was going to be a Yankee, it was kind of a surreal feeling,” McCutchen said in a press conference on Saturday afternoon.
The Yankees made a trade for McCutchen as Aaron Judge’s status is still uncertain. Is he as productive as he was with the Pirates from 2011-2015, when he was an All-Star five straight seasons, and finished in the top-five of the MVP voting four times? No. But he is an upgrade and gives the lineup some depth. Having him in the outfield with Brett Gardner and Aaron Hicks inspires more confidence than career infielder Neil Walker out of place because of injuries.
McCutchen hit .255 with 15 homers in 130 games in his short stay in San Francisco. His 73 walks are more than anybody on the Yankees except Aaron Hicks, who has drawn the same amount. His 123 strikeouts are more than anybody on the team except Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge.
“I feel like a lot of baseball players want to at least throw the pinstripes on for who knows how long just to say you did it,” McCutchen said.
Brian Cashman noted that McCutchen was not available on the waiver wire for the first three weeks of August. The Yankees also had a tough time with players because they have one of the best records in the league. “It was a long week but I’m glad it resolved the way it did,” Cashman said.
A deal was done and now McCutchen will be leading off and playing right field on Saturday afternoon. “For it to com to fruition, it’s pretty surreal,” McCutchen said. “It’s the only word I can think of right now.”