Pirates Trade Andrew McCutchen to the Giants For Kyle Crick and Bryan Reynolds

The Pittsburgh Pirates have made their second major trade in the last few days, this time sending Andrew McCutchen to the San Francisco Giants, according to Ken Rosenthal.

It’s not a surprise that the Pirates ended up trading McCutchen. The Gerrit Cole trade signaled that they wouldn’t be contending in 2018, and McCutchen is only under team control for the 2018 season. There were also rumors that they were more open to dealing McCutchen after that trade, and that the Giants were looking to acquire him.

No word yet on the return, but I’ll keep this updated throughout the day.

UPDATE 3:54 PM: It looks like Heliot Ramos isn’t in the deal.

Also no Tyler Beede…

Nor Chris Shaw…

Although, Morosi reporting it might mean that Chris Shaw is in the trade. More updates to come.

UPDATE 4:22 PM: Kyle Crick is reportedly part of the deal, according to Alex Pavlovic.

UPDATE 4:26 PM: I’m guessing Crick isn’t the main part of the deal, especially since Pavlovic said the MLB piece wouldn’t be a big piece. I’ll give some thoughts on him while we wait for the rest of it. He’s a hard-throwing reliever, averaging 95.4 MPH on his fastball last year and topping out at 97.3. Crick used to be a top prospect, but had command issues, and eventually moved to the bullpen. Last year he had a 3.06 ERA and a 5.30 xFIP in 30 appearances in the majors, with a 7.8 K/9 and a 4.7 BB/9, so clearly the control issues are still there. He could be a good reclamation project, although I wouldn’t count on him as a starting option at this point. Clearly the Pirates need someone better as the main part of the return here.

That said, they’ve assembled an interesting group of relievers this offseason, adding Nick Burdi and Jordan Milbrath in the Rule 5 draft, then adding Michael Feliz in the Gerrit Cole trade, and now reportedly Crick in this trade. If they can turn it around quickly, they could have a few hard-throwing, talented relievers to pair with Felipe Rivero in the back of the bullpen, depending on how these guys progress.

UPDATE 4:59 PM: Jeff Passan says that Bryan Reynolds is a name that has bounced around in trade talks for McCutchen.

Baseball America rated Reynolds the fifth best prospect in the system, and if the previous three prospects aren’t in the deal, he would be the best prospect available in the Giants’ system.

UPDATE 5:17 PM: Reynolds and Crick are the return, according to Andrew Baggarly.

Reynolds has an interesting bat, hitting for a .312/.364/.462 line in High-A last year, while cutting down on his strikeouts. Baseball America said that some scouts question his ability to reach his power potential, which could impact his future upside. This gives another outfield option in the system for the future if Austin Meadows doesn’t work out.

For those of you who have read my comments about going for a lower-level guy who hasn’t really broken out, Reynolds would kind of fit that bill. There’s no guarantee he adds to his power and improves his stock, but that’s never a guarantee with any player. But if he does figure it out and maximizes his power potential, while also maintaining his solid hitting skills, then he could see his prospect status increase in the future.

I’ll have more thoughts on the deal later.

UPDATE 6:13 PM: Jon Morosi says the Pirates are sending cash to the Giants in the deal to pay part of Andrew McCutchen’s 2018 salary.

UPDATE 6:25 PM: The Pirates have officially announced the move. They also received $500,000 in international bonus pool space.

UPDATE 6:32 PM: The Pirates issued statements from their front office.

Bob Nutting: “There is simply nothing easy about this decision. It is one of the most emotionally agonizing decisions that we have had to make in my tenure. Not only because of the type of player Andrew is, but also because of Andrew the person and for what he has meant to me personally, to our organization, to our fans, and to our community. It has been an honor to see first-hand Andrew grow into the man that he is today. I was there for his first workout at Pirate City in Bradenton. Even as a teenager his smile and energy were infectious. His talent was on full display for our fans from the moment he made his Major League debut; to the signing of his contract extension; to his MVP season in 2013 and his leadership role in our three straight Postseason appearances. Andrew helped create so many special memories both on and off the field for me, our organization and our fans. He did so while always carrying himself with humility, dignity and grace. He will be forever appreciated and celebrated by the Pirates organization. I want to thank Andrew and Maria for all they have done for the Pirates organization. We wish them and their family nothing but the best.”

Frank Coonelly: “Making the right decision for the Pirates organization is at times difficult and, on rare occasions, painful. The decision we announce today is both, and particularly the latter. Andrew McCutchen joined the Major League Club in 2009 and immediately became the face of our franchise. He did so with remarkable dignity, grace and maturity. His smile and edge were brilliant and his will to win was second-to-none. While many others made significant contributions as well, no individual was more responsible for the success that we had from 2013 to 2015 than Cutch, and no player was more disappointed than Andrew that we did not break through and win a World Series Championship for the City of Pittsburgh. Andrew’s decision in the spring of 2012 to sign a long-term contract with the Club was a turning point for the organization, as it literally signaled that he believed in what was happening here and that others, both on the Club and elsewhere in baseball, could believe in us as well. Andrew was our unquestioned leader on and off the field, and his on-field accomplishments during his nine seasons here place him among the all-time Pirates greats.

“As tremendous as Andrew is on the baseball field, he is even more special off of it. By dedicating himself to making a difference in the lives of so many others in our community, Andrew has truly lived the Roberto Clemente legacy of ensuring that he does not waste a single moment of his time here on earth. All of our fans, and especially the kids, wanted to get to know Cutch, and Andrew never said no. The countless hours that he and Maria gave of their time and their love were recognized in 2015 when Andrew became the first Pirate since Willie Stargell to be awarded the prestigious Clemente Award by MLB. On behalf of the entire Pirates organization, I thank Andrew for his enormous contributions to the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Pittsburgh community and we wish Andrew, Maria and Steel the very best as Andrew continues his career in San Francisco.”

Neal Huntington: “Andrew has been the center-point of the return of the Pittsburgh Pirates to a playoff-caliber baseball team. He played a significant and special role on our 2013-15 clubs that brought playoff baseball back to Pittsburgh. His accomplishments on the field are plentiful and deserve our respect and appreciation but he has also continued to be a terrific role model as a person off the field. Watching Andrew patrol center field with grace, fly around the bases, drive the ball all around the ballpark, celebrate with his teammates or interact with his family, friends or fans has created lifelong memories for me and many, many others around the game of baseball. This decision was an incredibly difficult one to make. We truly appreciate all that Andrew has done for this organization, city, fan-base and the game of baseball and wish him nothing but success in his future in and beyond the game of baseball.”

Huntington also commented on Crick and Reynolds…

Huntington on Crick: “Kyle Crick is a physical, Major League-ready right-handed reliever who brings a high-velocity, live fastball complimented by a quality slider to potentially pitch in a late inning role for the Pirates. Kyle’s power arsenal has resulted in a high strikeout rate complimented by inducing a lot of weak contact. After his first exposure to the Major League level last season, Kyle appears ready to take the next steps in what should be a productive career as a high leverage Major League relief pitcher.”

Huntington on Reynolds: “Bryan Reynolds is an intelligent, athletic, hard-working baseball prospect who does many things well on a baseball field. Bryan is an effective offensive player that also plays quality defense. We look forward to working with Bryan to maximize his tools and help him become a quality well-rounded Major League player who can impact a game in many ways beyond his quality bat.”

I think the most significant thing here is that Huntington refers to Crick as a future relief pitcher. So you probably shouldn’t be penciling him in as a possible rotation option any time soon.

UPDATE 6:42 PM: Ken Rosenthal reports the Pirates are sending $2.5 M in the deal.

I’ve got the Pirates’ payroll at about $81.5 M right now, although payroll is pretty much irrelevant in 2018 since they won’t be contending.

  • BuccosFanStuckinMD
    January 16, 2018 12:09 am

    Okay, who replaces the 25-30 HRs and 80-90 RBIs in the Pirates lineup in 2018?

  • BuccosFanStuckinMD
    January 15, 2018 11:54 pm

    So, we got this less than impressive return – even after giving the Giants $2.5M? Wow.

    Two trades of two of our biggest assets, and all we can get are other team’s leftovers…..

  • i still dont understand why they wouldnt spend the saved money… or at least some of it… on the right FA.

    Deal them at the deadline for a prospect if you have to.

  • How does the last year of Neal Huntington trades look overall? And where could I find that

  • Interesting that they picked up some international bonus money. I hope they spend it well.

    • BuccosFanStuckinMD
      January 15, 2018 11:55 pm

      That is the greatest irony of this trade – that they got international signing money – they didn’t even spend all that was allotted to them in 2017….this team is run on a shoe string budget – embarrassing.

  • justinblain1996
    January 15, 2018 8:57 pm

    My only bias against the trade is when I heard it was with San Fran was hoping Derek Law was part of the return but that’s because Law is from my neighborhood and my dad went to school with his dad. But other than that good of a pickup as you are going to get for a soon to be free agent

  • Emotionally disturbing to say the least. Zero positive impact but saving money. The 2 returns are nothing diffferent than we already have in our system for one of the all time great Pirates who loved his uniform as much as we did. The days of keeping players who are great on and off the field to save payroll is sad. Back into the hole for 20 some years is where we are headed and if I’m Clint I catch the next train out of loser town. Tickets will be plentiful and cheap. Cottage businesses like the restaurants, bars and team gear stands will suffer greatly. Employees will be laid off and families will suffer. Minor league baseball at PNC park is what ROOT TV will be showing to a declining market with no marketability, this is the parts of the sum. This is proof positive that the Neal Huntington plan has failed and his term should end today. The laughable part is we still will be paying a portion of Andrews salary!!! Can you imagine being in the San Fran boardroom and asking for us to pay part of the salary and we said yes? They all fell off their chairs.

    • I bet that this costs them Pirates a lot of money. They are trying to renegotiate the TV deal….haha! Ticket sales. Forget it. Who is the attraction now? Marte of half a season suspension fame? Harrison will be gone I suspect. Even from a greedy perspective this sucks. Maybe the worst thing: not only are they greedy, they are terrible at making decisions. Short sighted.

  • Welcome to the corrupt ‘free market’ system of baseball, with no salary cap. The Steelers and Penguins can compete due ONLY to the salary cap in their respective sports. In fact, it was rumored the Penguins were expected to leave the city due to the finances of our small market. Alas, the institution of the salary cap (and Mario) saved the team . ………

    Andrew often voiced his desire to play his entire career in Pittsburgh. But I never heard him state he would fit his salary into the confines of the Pirates’ finances.

    Andrew could have decided to play for, say $10,000,000 per year, or something in that ball park that would have fit our finances. We ALL know he and his family are set for life. But I suspect the baseball union would have frowned on this type of contract. And I’m a big union supporter as well.

    Well, the Pirates certainly have company in the necessity of losing our home-grown talent. Other cities are losing their marquee players, KC, TB, Balt, CIN, Oak, and even SD.

    While this system has ruined baseball, you can whine all you’d like about the ownership of the PBC. Baseball loves this diversion – because it allows the rich franchises to get richer while the small market franchises struggle to even field a competitive team!

  • welp, they at least owe it to us to spend some money on a few interesting pieces that they can deal at the deadline this year.

    I really really don’t see the point in not spending… say… 90+million, no matter how bad they plan on being

    i mean i guess it’s possible that Nutting isn’t going to let them spend over 80 million.

    But if they’re still allowed to spend 100, might as well take some shots.

    • BuccosFanStuckinMD
      January 15, 2018 11:59 pm

      I disagree – there are no available free agents who will make this team a contender – all they will do is cost money and block prospects. If the Pirates are going to do a tear down, they might as well do it right and find out if they have anything in the likes of Kingham, Holmes, Osuna, Weiss, Diaz, Moroff, etc.

    • Huntington’s quantity over quality strategy killed this, jay. There’s just no room at the inn for free agents; not without blocking someone younger.

      • yeah i’m starting to realize this. Gah.
        we’d gone back and forth on spending the savings before, but yeah that was when we were picturing a Cole deal that brought back some non-40-man-roster talent.

        it’s really a shame because i truly do still see them as an 80 win team. What a waste of a year. They’re wasting a precious year of control on every single young player that’s going to be on that roster this year. Which would have been (more) fine if 90% of the Cole trade wasn’t for MLB players.

        • Your last point cannot be overstated.

          The Pirates will have wasted pre-arb years from Bell, Taillon, Kuhl, Williams, Frazier, and Moran – at least – by the time they’re competitive again.

      • aside from… say… storing some of the young pitching in AAA, and bringing in some intriguing FA pitching, i dont see any options.

        i’d actually be *for* storing some young pitching in AAA, as to not waste a year of control on *everybody* in this wasted year.

        Maybe something goofy like take a prospect and Matt Kemp’s salary from the Dodgers could be done haha. Stand his corpse in RF against tough lefties.

        i’m also still a lot more intrigued by the possibility of what Lucroy could bring in a Deadline deal if he bounces back than i am by Elias Diaz.

      • Who was out there offering quality instead of quantity on the other side of the trade? Takes two to tango.

  • So they are literally paying the Giants to take Andrew off their hands. And the “return” such as it is, is a “hard throwing” reliever and an outfielder in A-ball who is years away from being major-league ready. And a payroll in the low 80 million mark. This move, and the trade (giveaway) of Gerrit Cole to the Astros means the Pirates will have zero chance of being competitive in 2018, and good luck going forward from there until who knows when. Instead of building on the strong seasons from 2013 – 2015, they have progressively torn down this club, cluelessly, until it is a smoking heap. I am sure Jhay, Cervelli and Nova all want to be traded out of Pittsburgh as fast as possible, to just about anywhere else. And if this is the best the Pirates can get for Cole and Cutch – literally no one with a high ceiling – then the return for the others will be pitiful. Class acts like Andrew do not come along all that often, and this management team will live to regret this move, they have broken all bonds of trust with the fan base, including this one writing from Australia. I suggest that a lawsuit be brought to force Nutting to sell this club. A total disgrace. Well at least they are no longer stuck in “no-man’s land” – they are headed straight to the basement or the sewer, take your pick.

  • I have no problem with the trade, persay. Rebuild, if that’s what you think. BUT sending money over to cover part of his salary? That is the biggest BS move. I will not step foot into PNC Park for the foreseeable future.

  • I would have no problem trading Cutch because that is part of the game. That being said, it also had to be a baseball trade. To me, this is a salary dump because the return does nothing to improve the Bucs. Why not hold Cutch and trade him at the deadline if this was the best offer to date. Team also could have offered him the QO after the season.

  • The same people who complain that NH should have taken the rumored Cutch deal from the Nats in December ’16 were complaining Saturday that he should have waited until the deadline to deal Cole.

  • When you think about the fact that he was drafted in 2005, and has been in the organization now for 13 years, it’s almost remarkable that he lasted this long. I’m just saying that as an observation, not meant to be negative or positive in any fashion. but I just think back to hearing about this young guy named McCutchen who could one day make an impact on the club, and to think about how long ago that was…it is just amazing tome that he was here for so many years.

    I guess nothing lasts forever and we all knew that this was coming at some point. I’m just glad we got to enjoy him while he was here.

  • Thank you for your grace, smile and effort. Who could have ever thought that you would not be wearing gold and black again. I hate that you will no longer be there for us fans to watch and cheer. However, I can not believe that management had to pay to move you to another team. That was a bigger disgrace then the players the team got for you in return. So long and I wish you so much success that it embarrasses the Pirate organization.

  • BuccosFanStuckinMD
    January 15, 2018 7:25 pm

    Good for Cutch. Bad for Pirates fans. Last.place is likely…70 to 75 wins at best.

  • Don’t worry, I’m sure the Pirates plan on reinvesting the dollars saved.

  • “We Are Family”…21st century style. Always looking for someone better on the Internet. Thanks for the memories.

  • Just when I was saying that the Bucs can compete without Cole, the other shoe drops. Unless of course Austin Meadows becomes the 2018 NL ROY!

  • Good thing Neal insisted on getting Robles as a return last year for Cutch…

    • Were we offered a better deal than the one we just made? I’m thinking we weren’t, and we got one more year of Cutch even though that year didn’t work out the way we hoped.

      • I’m pretty sure they had an offer for Giolito and Dane Dunning last year and maybe another throw in. That clearly would be better the Crick and Reyonlds.

        • Was that ever confirmed, or was this like the Frazier, Adams, and Andujar rumor with the Yankees?

        • There were already concerns about Giolito and he did nothing this year to dispel those concerns. I’m not sure he’s any different than Click–both are former highly rated prospects who may never have good enough control to be more than high leverage relievers. I’d definitely prefer Giolito but I don’t think the difference is huge (and I’m not sure Giolito was actually offered).

          I don’t know anything about Dunning (or Reynolds), but comparing their 2017 seasons and positions, I’d prefer Reynolds.

  • I’m really going to need Spring Training and that Colin Moran swing analysis article.

    Also, that Kevin Newman article I was promised. 😉

  • I think the return is fair, which is why I didn’t want them trading Cutch–we weren’t going to get enough back to justify trading our best player in the last 25+ years.

  • Maybe you’ve heard the expression that you think you’re better than a major-league general manager well maybe for once it’s actually possible because I think anyone who’s on this website could be and perform as a better general manager than Neal Huntington.
    I’ve never longed for the days of Sid thrift more than I do today.

  • You cannot tell me that there isn’t a major-league team willing to spend more than a second round pick for Andrew McCutchen and if we had kept him played him we would have been able to achieve a QL first round pick for him so there is absolutely no legitimate financial or otherwise reason to tell me that your best player is now no longer a part of this team there are no excuses for Bob Nutting on this one. He will get none of my $ in 2018.

    • You will get the opportunity to test your baseball brilliance nex off-season when Cutch is a free agent. Will SF give him a QO? Or extend him for more than $50M? Please make sure to post when that happens.

      • I’ll take that bet and hope you eat your words when they do.

        • Exactly what ‘words’ will I have to eat and what bet did I make? You must be wrong a lot to have such an inferiority complex!

          • Clearly referring to SF posting a QO when Cutch easily posts value worthy of it.
            Your lack of knowledge of the player other than reading an article is clear that you don’t know Jack.

            • For someone with NO knowledge of me other than reading a comment and feeling the need to insult me leads me to conclude that you are an ignorant, self-important assshole!

  • I know it doesn’t work this way but im including Nick Burdi as part of the deal instead of the international money. Ignorance is bliss.

  • Depending on how the bonus pool money is spent–if it’s used to land a really good prospect or two–that could turn the deal into something much closer to what we were hoping for: a high upside guy or two who are far from the Majors, but with the sort of tools we can dream on.

  • We get another 1/2 million in international bonus money we will not spend in the trade! Now I am really excited!

  • Pathetic !

  • The Pirates had to work hard to get so little. I would have much preferred the compensation pick but that would entail paying 14 million to a really good ball player and we will never do that.

  • Wow, and the Pirates just signed Rivero on the cheap…4/$22M. With two options.

  • BuccosFanStuckinMD
    January 15, 2018 5:45 pm

    How does this compare to Longorio return?

    • How does it compare to getting a comparable player with an equivalent AAV and 5 more years of control?

      Not as good.

      • Wait you think it’s a *benefit* that the Giants get to pay $86m for Longo’s age 33-37 years?

        • He’s a very good fielder and I don’t see the bat falling off too quickly. I’m sure the last year or two won’t be pretty, but I think he’ll easily be worth it overall.

  • If they could have had the package the Nationals offered for ChiSox Eaton last year, GM NH looks to have made a mistake holding on to him.

    • michael schalke
      January 15, 2018 6:15 pm

      They wouldn’t be the same package because Eaton is younger, better contract and overall a better player.

      • Eaton is so very average Only the Pirates fans and the dumb Nats saw that as a good move. Them not getting Cutch was a lose lose for both clubs

        • You obviously don’t believe WAR is worth anything. Eaton earned 6.2 fWAR in 2016, 3.8 fWAR in 2015, and 3.1 fWAR in 2014. He’s not Cutch at Cutch’s peak, but he’s a very good player.

  • Thanks, Cutch for the great memories. As opposed to that other former Buc outfielder who ended up by the bay, you’ll always be a Pirate.
    Hope you have an awesome year and end up facing Cole in the World Series.
    That would be fitting and poetic justice.

    Okay who’s next Josh or Cervelli?

    • By Josh, I assume you mean Harrison…you scared me as my first thought was Bell!

      Cervelli’s not going anywhere…not unless the Pirates are comfortable swapping bad contracts or sending about $10M with him.

  • Horrible! Cutch a total class act. Would have been better letting him play out his contract. Not getting high upside back. Why bother? Team has been back sliding ever since NH decided that Niese and Vogelsong were rotation options to start ’16. Even I know better following from Australia. Their next season above. 500 will be when? 2025?

  • It’s bad when I entertain the idea of a prospect as a potential reclaimation project. However not bad overall trade Reynolds is passable but man in retrospect a mistake not to take Nats offer. 2020 hindsight I guess.

  • Finding the silver lining here, with my days at Vanderbilt, at least I get to root for Bryan Reynolds now…That’s silver lining right?

  • Sad day. Cutch was one of the all-time great people to play for the Pirates.

  • Reynolds is in the deal. Takes it from being horrible to just bad. Slight upgrade for you today Neal.

  • Good Bye Cutch -MVP and Thanks.

  • With the Pirates picking up 3 relievers in these 2 deals, I sure hope they trade Rivera. He is their only chance to get a high upside prospect.

    • Why would anyone trade us a high upside prospect for Rivero. I don’t doubt he will be trade I just don’t expect anything of value coming back.

      • 4 years of control for a closer who might be dominant. The Astros gave up a lot for Giles a few years ago. Even 2 months of Aroldes Chapman yielded Torres for the Yankees. Might be better to wait until the deadline when a team might be desperate.

        • Yea that’s how you make trades…every pundit in baseball is really confused by the Cole deal.

        • That was to the Philllies this is to the Pirates. Why would we trade a bonifide 1 or two cost control starter for a couple of RPs and a prospect most feel has busted? As it stands I guess we will probably not trade Rivero until next year or the following year since we got him to sign a nice deal.

  • OK- so the 14M saved will go back into scouting and/or future payrolls?

  • Not_Andy_Laroche
    January 15, 2018 5:13 pm

    Poor Cutch, going to a team that finished with 11 fewer wins than the Pirates last year.

    • BuccosFanStuckinMD
      January 16, 2018 12:05 am

      True, but the Giants are a real baseball franchise with 3 recent WS titles – and they actually made bold moves this off season to improve the team and WIN – something the Pirates owner and management would know nothing about.

  • Why are my comments being viewed

  • I’m sick.

  • I honestly was holding back tears when I heard this. I get the whole argument about productivity etc. But you can’t separate a man from himself. Nobody did more for Pirates baseball over the past years since the early nineties than McCutchen. I sat through twenty years of losing and now we have so little to show for it. We had McCutchen though. He was not only a MVP and great player at one time, he was one hell of a person. I’ve watched 162 plus games. I’ve invested so much. And it just feels terrible to see this. Digging in to the pain is a feeling that somehow this was about enriching a person who makes more in a week (day?) than I make in a year and who just needs more I guess.

  • I love the passion of those offering comment. It shows that we all love the Pirates. Cutch will be missed like no other.

  • Being from Massachusetts, I was SOOOO happy to Cutch play in Boston last year and he hit a dinger. Will always remember it.

  • Getting so many relief arms in these trades might hint at a Rivero trade. I’d be really sad to see him go because he’s so much fun to watch, but the trade market for elite relievers *has* been really good lately, so it might be a good idea.

    • I would think a Rivero trade has to happen. If we are going to rebuild, we might as well part with the closer. What does a 65-70 win team need an elite closer for?

    • We might be able to land someones 10th best prospect for Rivero unless they want us to take there 15th best or 20th best. Surely no one would trade us anyone they really feel like they want.

    • Absolutely agree.

      Cutch wasn’t going to return much…I think we all knew it this morning, but the news of a deal made us hopeful of a larger-than-legitimate return.

      Harrison will net less.

      Cole got the Pirates some ML ready players.

      Rivero, I think, gets you the Rookie/A Ball blue chippers.

      • BuccosFanStuckinMD
        January 16, 2018 12:07 am

        Carlos Gomez yielded more when traded to Houston 2-3 years ago, and he never was as good an all around player as McCutchen.

    • I’m sure you will hear “he’s only been an effective reliever for a year. He’s not worth what the Pirates want” from any team we would try to move Rivero to. Then NH would get intimidated and say yes to the first low balm offer. You should hear some of the batshit things Astros fans as saying about the Cole deal.

  • Hey Tim, here’s a thought- in the face of this apparently pathetic trade quit whining about he state of MLB economics and actually discuss where and how this team is currently positioned and how it reflects on Neal Huntington- the guy you said deserved to be brought back here for 4 more years.

    • The ONLY reason that both NH and CH got 4 year extensions was NOT based on merit, but it was based on dismantling the team and rebuilding it…

      • Kyle Crick and a mid range prospect will DO NOTHING to help rebuild this team. Cole was not a salary dump. This very much is. You would be better off paying Cutch and taking the comp pick next year.

        • What comp pick? via a QO? What makes you think anyone signs Cutch for anything significant if he has a QO?

          • Even if he doesn’t get the $50M, the Pirates still would get what equates to an early third round pick. Not saying they should have kept him for it, just clarifying the new QO rules.

        • Nowhere did I say anything about salary dumps…Dismantling the team goes far beyond salary dumps.

    • Come on, man…

      • To each his own. I’m sick of seeing the commentary about the inequities in the MLB economic system. It’s old news and there’s nothing the can be done about it. It is essentially something the Pirates as an organization have very little control over. I’m not saying they don’t exist, I’m saying I don’t view them as an excuse or rationalization for the job NH has done the last few years. What the Pirates do have control over is the people they entrust to run this organization. And think the truth about NH’s capabilities are being revealed more day by day.

        My opinion- perhaps you and others disagree.

        • You mean the capabilities to bring a team to three straight postseasons?

          • Yeah… I anxiously await you explaining to me how this team is getting back to the postseason. Our 2 best players are gone. We didn’t even get a 55 grade player in return. Our farm system is mediocre. Our GM is below average as far as drafting is concerned… so how exactly does this thing get turned around?

    • It’d be awesome for you to set up a site to offer the opinion you seek.

  • I can’t wait to see someone attempt to defend this move. Yeah, Crick is the piece we needed to contend in 2019-20. Are you Fing kidding me. Why not just take the comp pick?

    • well lets wait until all the pieces are announced. If it’s only Crick for Cutch then light the torches, get the pitchforks and lets march to the ballpark.

      • It’s Crick and a midrange prospect from a Giants system that is Fing garbage.

      • Reynolds is the only other piece according to some sources. No power and no speed. he looks like a poor version of Frasier. Should fit right in

  • tggpusesbadlanguage
    January 15, 2018 4:49 pm

    That said, they’ve assembled an interesting group of relievers this offseason, adding Nick Burdi and Jordan Milbrath in the Rule 5 draft, then adding Michael Feliz in the Gerrit Cole trade, and now reportedly Crick in this trade. If they can turn it around quickly, they could have a few hard-throwing, talented relievers to pair with Felipe Rivero in the back of the bullpen, depending on how these guys progress.

    If they can even get to the back of the bullpen….

    • Who gives a shit about relievers on a team that can’t compete? It makes no sense unless we plan to do away with the concept of a starter and use one pitcher per inning.

      • Not saying I’m crazy about acquiring so many relievers when there are other needs, but the most cost-effective way to go from bad to mediocre or from mediocre to good is to have a lights-out bullpen.

      • Some can can throw 2 innings… 😉

    • I believe a power hitting outfielders is more important than a couple of additional powers arms in the pen.

  • Next is Harrison than Nova along with 2 prospects ala Liriano trade than next is Cervelli plus 2 prospects ala Liriano. 2018 Payroll will be 30 mil so instead of sucking out 40 mil he’ll be able to suck out 100 mil. Doesn’t anybody know he received 86 mil in 2 checks from the BAMtech sale from Disney this year. The pirates are a Quasi Gov investment and the city of Pittsburgh should lock him out of his office. He would have traded CLEMENTE.

  • JHay to Brewers?

  • Joseph Willis
    January 15, 2018 4:46 pm

    Maybe we include Hudson to lose his contract?

  • How can this be right, they unloaded a salary for a washed up minor league pitcher and a MLB player to be announced. I am sure that’s Buster Poasey seeing we need catchers. What a shame, they could have signed a FA 3rd baseman and competed.

  • Sad day for me, that this team would not find a way to make Cutch a life long Pirate.

  • So I guess we’re giving up on a Daniel Hudson bounce-back. There aren’t enough spots in the bullpen for all of these guys, are there? Rivero, Feliz, Crick, Milbrath, Kontos, and a couple of the excess starters almost have to go in there, too, right?

    I’m not upset at the idea of giving up on Hudson. I’m just not sure why we’re bringing in this many relievers who have to be on the Major League roster.

    • We’ll just have a team full of pitchers, Glasnow is playing leftfield on days he doesn’t pitch.

    • I don’t even have the will to figure out whether or not Crick has options.

    • Rivero, Hudson, and Kontos have guaranteed contracts. Milbrath is a Rule 5 pick. Schugel and Turley are out of options. That’s 6. Musgrove, Feliz, Crick, Neverauskas, Santana, Glasnow, Brault, and Kingham all have options left.

      • So bye bye Hudson, Schugel, and Turley, I have to guess. Maybe Milbrath, too, but as I’ve already said, I *need* to see that fastball in action.

        • I would assume they’ll use Spring Training to look at all of these guys and then make their decisions. Usually Spring Training doesn’t have many spots open. But I see most of the bullpen as open auditions.

      • Burdi may have the best arm of them all and they have to keep him.

      • I think Musgrove is in the rotation. If he finds success, it will make the Cole trade look that much better for FO.

    • 12 Relievers and zero starters…the next big thing for all those metric people…

    • This team fancies itself as a team that drafts and develops pitchers, but fails to give many of them an opportunity to pitch in the Show.

  • Ryan_Vogels__t
    January 15, 2018 4:41 pm

    Anyone want to bet that Maria’s next kid is named “Crab”, “Bridge”, or “Golden Gate”?

  • Pertinent today…

    These words from Dr. King also come to mind today: pic.twitter.com/0qFK3RxBAF— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) January 15, 2018

    • Ryan_Vogels__t
      January 15, 2018 4:56 pm

      Yeah… let’s remember that, Hillary, when you are indicted in 2016! PLEASE do not post ANYTHING from that “woman’s” feed onto this site anymore… This is supoposed toe about Baseball, not about some “Godfather” of the Democratic racket-come two-time failed Presidential candidate. She, and her twitter, should be banned in the public interest!

  • Tim I have news for you… averaging 95 and topping out at 97 isn’t hard throwing as a reliever in 2018

  • LOL!

  • Kyle crick is horrible if he is the primary piece

  • Every Pirate fan who was around for the first rebuild right now.


    • I was a young man when the first rebuild began. At that pace ,I will be retired when this team becomes relevant agaiin.

  • I assume we are trading Rivero next?

  • Damn I just looked at their list and was about to predict Crick and we finally trade for Ryan Howard…lol

  • Kyle Crick was SF #1 prospect after 2012 and 2013 seasons. Was a former #33 prospect in baseball. High K numbers. Looks like his success hasn’t continued at the same rate as he has advanced up the system. Still, 540Ks in 478 minor league innings…

    • he has terrible control. it improved once he went to the bullpen

    • Heck if we use 2013 as a barometer the Cole trade would look better as well.

      • Thank you. The so-called Pirates fans on this board fail to account for Cole’s complete track record, but will go all the way back to 2013 to find something positive to say about a prospect who has experienced zero success in the Major Leagues. At least Cole logged 200+ innings and his K rate increased. HRs were an outlier IMO.

    • Maybe we can trade for Jurickson Profar based on his 2012 prospect rating while we are at it. We should send NH a subscription to Baseball America’s top 100 prospect report each year to make sure they have the latest…..

  • Joseph Willis
    January 15, 2018 4:29 pm

    Or build up replacements for another trade of our best asset….rivero?

  • Alex Pavlovic

    Verified account

    3m3 minutes ago
    Per source, Kyle Crick is part of the McCutchen trade.

    • pirates trying to build an elite bullpen

      • Hard to win by holding down a 0 run lead.

      • BuccosFanStuckinMD
        January 15, 2018 4:41 pm

        Hilarious – who emphasizes bullpen in a rebuild?

        • Relievers have massive trade value these days for some reason. That’s the only way it makes sense in the context of a major rebuild. But if it’s a retool for 2019, a strong bullpen will be important to cover the team’s youth and other shortcomings.

          • The thing about retooling for 2019 was actually getting better players in the process of the retool.

            • To that end, I was actually okay with the Cole trade. Filled a hole we had no internal options at, with free agent options out there who could backfill, at least reasonably, Cole’s absence. I’ll wait to see who else we get for Cutch, but Crick makes little sense (though he was mentioned as a minor piece).

              • Moran is no better than Gosselin who we traded more than Moran to get…why aren’t we trading for picks? Is that not legal in baseball, why the hell do we need another hard throwing reliever who can’t hit the strike zone?

        • obviously this isn’t a rebuild. they still think they can compete….so they’re shoring up their….”weaknesses”…third base…bullpen.

          i don’t agree with the process, but this is what they appear to be doing

          • If it looks like a rebuild, smells like a rebuild…it’s a rebuild…

          • How is filling third base greater than your ace pitcher…now we have an even bigger whole to deal with…have you ever heard the phrase “3rd base wins championships”?..,yea me either

  • kyle crick is reportedly in the deal

  • I’d be happy with Jacob Gonzalez and Sandro Fabian.

  • Joseph Willis
    January 15, 2018 4:22 pm

    MLB player coming back?

  • What’s even the point if we got none of Beede, Shaw, or Ramos? The Giants’ system is thin. There’s not a lot of value past those three.

  • BuccosFanStuckinMD
    January 15, 2018 4:14 pm

    When you think the team re-upped NH, Hurdle, etc., for 4 more years, where is there any hope of a turnaround? This management team is a dismal failure – combined with a cheap owner – not a recipe for success.

    • I think the reason it was for 4 years was because there was a mandate to cut payroll and it was going to be unpoular so Big pockets bob gave them both some security for having to captain this sinking ship.

      • BuccosFanStuckinMD
        January 15, 2018 4:39 pm

        They might as well fold up tent and sell the team to someone who wants to invest and win….

      • Not just a mandate to cut payroll, but also to put in place a re-build, so I believe that there will be more going.

        • No doubt about that however the only thing they are doing now is securing early round draft picks for the next 1/2 decade.

  • Joseph Willis
    January 15, 2018 4:14 pm

    Another pirates site says a high A pitcher but say it isn’t confirmed yet

    • BuccosFanStuckinMD
      January 15, 2018 4:15 pm

      a pitcher??? yeah, we really needed more pitchers as opposed to a catcher, outfielder, third baseman, etc….

  • Sad, but like the move. Time to reload to make another run like a few years ago.

  • Good to see I am not the only one that is going to miss Cutch in a Pirates Jersey. I was hoping he would be a career player for the Pirates.

  • At least I’ll find a good seat when I finally make it to PNC.

  • What the F**K is purpose of this if the alleged return is as minimal as rumor suggests?

    • Keeping cutch around as you rebuild. And deal his buddy jay hey. To have him sulk and struggle. Is not something the team nor the player wanted at this point. Good for him to go and compete. It’s modern day sports. You root for players like this and you wish them well when they go elsewhere. Either due to trades or by players leaving in free agency.

  • hopefully they bring back Gorkys Hernandez to be the face to the franchise.

  • Damn…

  • They need to have a good year or it will take years to get the trust back. We re-upped a lot of management that are past their prime.

    • Huh? The Pirates seemed to capture the fans just fine in 2013. After 20 years of truly embarrassing teams and two epic collapses. If and when the team gets back to playing well and winning many fans will return. Not all of them. Many.

  • Joseph Willis
    January 15, 2018 4:07 pm

    Is this the longest wait to hear a return ever. This is like the Liriano trade

  • Ouch…maybe it’s their catcher who’s stuck behind Posey as part of the deal, but Cutch going to the worst farm system definitely doesn’t give us much hope while we wait for the return.

  • IF the Giants could get Cutch to sign an extension, you could possibly see McCovey Cove renamed McCutchen Cove

  • Today, I hate baseball.

    • Rebuilding, but without the excitement and hope that returning young talent is supposed to promise.

      • To rebuild AND have the talent to pull it off?

        Ugh, you just want everything, don’t you?

      • Some guys should just never be traded. Cutch is one of them.

        I’m sure by Opening Day I’ll be excited for the season and hopeful for a miracle season. Just not as excited or hopeful as the last 6 years or so.

  • wonder if the pirates will get duggar from the giants. mlb ready outfielder. decent power

  • If no Ramos, no Beede, and no Shaw, then no anything from that system. Sad day for Pittsburgh.

  • Joseph Willis
    January 15, 2018 3:59 pm

    They don’t have anyone else in their minors. Any reliefs prospects?

  • The game is baseball … If you could predict the outcome, they wouldn’t need to play 182 games … blaming anybody is just a waste of time

  • I think the only people shocked with this are the posters who thought we were still trying to compete this year

    • I was holding out hope we would trade to compete in the future….you know like a real rebuild..obviously not. I knew this was going to happen. It has happened so many times under different ownership. They could wait till the trade deadline to move these guys to improve the return to lay the foundation for a solid rebuild and future competitive play. Nope, they are trading their best pieces for a rebuild too early so they don’t have to pay them half their salary this year. They are waisting an opportunity to improve the future for half a F-ing years salary for guys that they can hide behind just like Hutchison. They will lie threw their teeth to a fan base that has seen this move 1000 times after they cut most of if not all the guys they traded for and say “look we tried, this Guy was interesting, it just didn’t work out how were we supposed to know?” Or “This was the best deal we could get”. Like hell it is! Wait half a damn year then get a better deal you cheap clowns. Is that half year salary you saved gunna fill up your back up private jet with fuel? They know damn well what they are doing and it has nothing to do with competing at any time. You don’t trade controllable, young, cheap, top of the rotation pitchers for 4 little league right fielders and a six pack of Keystone Ice if you are trying to compete in the future. I’m so disgusted. Rebuilding is right but, that’s not even close to what’s happening here…Again, why buy a team if this is what you are going to do? Might as well Put the paper bags back over our heads and wait another 20 plus years until we are even relevant.

      • So true and truly sad. I do think we have a really good chance of winning the Eastern league though

  • No Shaw No Beede No Ramos, no worries Pirates seem to go for free these days. I know Cutch’s value isn’t overly high but good lord. No one should complain though we shouldn’t have expected any less after the Cole trade.

  • BuccosFanStuckinMD
    January 15, 2018 3:53 pm

    Just think, this franchise won 98 games in 2015 – less than 36 months later, this. NH is not responsible for Kang and Marte getting suspended or Cole and Polanco under achieving, but the rest of the train wreck is on him.

    • michael schalke
      January 15, 2018 3:55 pm

      The reasons you gave are enough to make it a fairly substantial train wreck.

      • BuccosFanStuckinMD
        January 15, 2018 4:08 pm

        Yes, and when you add in Walker/Niese trade, Liriano trade, Nicasio debacle, poor drafting of position players, keeping Stewart over Diaz for 2 more years, dumpster dive approach to LA and Cuba, etc., it is a disaster….

        • The Liriano trade had nothing to do with it. Get over it. He sucked when we traded him. It was bad to throw in the catching prospect but that had nothing to do with losing the last 2 years.

          • What that told everyone in baseball is the Pirates will trade costly players no matter what the return and if necessary will trade additional players to reduce payroll. Everyone in baseball knows the Pirates are under the gun right now.

    • Those are some pretty big parts of the wreck! Not that Huntington has not made mistakes, but let’s not lose sight of that.

    • or McCutchen underachieving

  • michael schalke
    January 15, 2018 3:53 pm

    It had to happen. Great guy whose performance was slipping the last couple years. Never was the leader I hoped he would be but was a really good Pirate.

  • 3 team trade? Or major league ready players back. What everyone thoughts

    • I’m going to guess 3-team trade. Giants send major league guys to someone for prospects to go to Pittsburgh. That’s what I’m hoping after looking at the Giants crappy prospects

    • Wabbit_Season
      January 15, 2018 8:17 pm

      No soup!

  • no Heliot Ramos

    • Everybody is over evaluating Cutch’s worth at this point. Put sentiment aside and think through this….he is definitely on the down side.

      • A lot teams could use a guy who hit 28 HRs and batted 279 with a strong OBP and a history of silver slugger awards. My guess the Pirates got a bag of balls and BN gets to reduce payroll another 14 million! Yeah for Big pockets BN!

      • I was expecting a great return for Cutch but, you know what would make that return better? Waiting until the trade deadline. Instead ownership is comprised of a bunch of cheap bastards who can’t, sorry won’t, pay half a years salary to help improve the teams future. I’ve read so many articles about the Cole trade written by utterly confused journalists that all say that it’s a widely known tactic to not trade Your asserts during the offseason. A few used the wording “Most GMs are smart enough to know that”. Again, I’m so embarrassed to be a Pirates fan.

      • True. So don’t make the trade. Let him start season in the Burgh and made trade when another playoff team’s bat goes down. You want to rebuild, but you also need good players to do so. Worst thing that happens if you hold is that he walks. The fan base is more apt to understand that instead of this dump of a deal.

  • FIRE SALE!!!!

  • End of an era

    • piraterican21
      January 15, 2018 4:52 pm

      My thoughts are the same, it was a joy to watch him play, thanks for three exciting play off years.

  • Want Heliot Ramos?
    Surest thing to the next McCutchen, but years away in rookie ball.

  • Wasn’t sad to see Cole go, little upset at return but didn’t mind him leaving but this hurts. Wanted it to happen so we could get on a new track but this sucks. We aren’t getting anything either. Already reported no Ramos, Beede, or Shaw…

  • BuccosFanStuckinMD
    January 15, 2018 3:49 pm

    Good for Cutch – he was a great Pirate and now goes to a a much better run franchise with more likelihood of competing.

    • I had the same thought. Giants want to win every year. He could be a huge piece for them over the next 2-3 seasons, and Cutch is a great rep for MLB.

    • Giants won 64 games last year

    • The Giants will be ” competing ” ? With who ? The Dodgers ? Don’t make me laugh. The only thing they MIGHT compete for is a Wild Card.

  • From the minors, I wouldn’t mind bryan reynolds, and I could see derek law or jarrett parker being useful.

    • mike_carlini66
      January 15, 2018 4:18 pm

      MLB Pipeline says Reynolds has a 40 arm. Not really a fan already.

      • Arm is the least important to me. I like what I read about reynolds. Seems like a well rounded player and a switch hitter.

      • Also, I might add that Meadows has a 40 arm, and I’d surprised if McCutchen was even that high. Reynolds will be our second best OF prospect, and probably slot in around 8-10 on our top prospect list.

        • Reynolds is a very strong prospect who played at Vanderbilt and Team USA. BA had him as having an average arm for CF (college position) and most thought he would be one of the safest picks in the draft, but without a high ceiling – all he does is hit and field well. 26 doubles, 9 triples, 10 HR at A+ playing all 3 OF positions. I hope the Pirates will advance him through AA as quickly as possible. .

  • I’ve known this was coming for 2 years but nonetheless…it really smarts. Best
    talent we have had here is Bonds. Unlike him a class act

  • I get it. But dang, this really really sucks.

  • cutch may not be the only one going – a prospect and money may be involved for a higher rated prospect.

    • I doubt it when their top 3 aren’t involved and it’s a universally frowned upon farm.

  • Man, if I’m Josh Harrison, I’m not buying any green bananas!

  • Love that comment from Sean McCool “Pirates really doing the Steelers a favor…”

    • I thought it was the other way around. I’m no conspiracy theorist, but I think the Cole trade was completed last week. They waiting till Saturday night to announce because the Steelers were playing Sunday.

  • I’m still getting over the Cole trade

  • Goodbye Cutch. Love and will miss you…you rescued this franchise.

    I’m glad the Pirates are going all in on rebuilding.

    I will say this: don’t expect some universally accepted haul for an OF north of 30 with no more speed or defense…he rallied his season last year, but the first 2 months essentially sunk the Pirates chances of contending while Marte was suspended.

    • Don’t call this a rebuild…in order to do that you maximize your return for the capital you have. Smart deals don’t happen in the off-season since there is no leverage. The Pirates are seriously too cheap to wait till the trade deadline to help greatly increase return and actually start a rebuild. This is a sweepstakes, and we should all be embarrassed..I’m all for a rebuild but, this is what I feared the most. NH making the deals. It’s infuriating how they do not care about the future of the team and care more about paying these guys salary for half a year. Why even own the team if you don’t give a shit about it?

      • Yanks and Astros had already taken their top prospects off the board. If it doesn’t happen now, the likelihood a top prospect gets traded at trade deadline is also very low. Top prospects go for Bonafide Star players of which neither Cole nor McCutchen is at this time. You’re telling me Cole is equivalent to Quintana, Verlander? Nope or McCutchen is equivalent to a Giancarlo Stanton? again nope. To me, Cutch is trending downward and Rob S is right about Cutch. Decreased Speed (not much in SB dept, and his arm is average at best), His power is still present, but his average has dipped. In 2016, he had a terrible year and i recall people calling for him to be traded then — was this you? He may still be productive like a Marlon Byrd, but nowhere near when he was hitting .300 and an all-star.

    • Case closed !

  • This was expected and yet I’m devastated. One of my favorite athletes ever. I love him so much…

  • today is a sad day

  • My sources tell me that the centerpiece of this deal are memberships to the jelly of the month club for Nutting and Huntington.

  • I’m so freaking bummed right now

  • mike_carlini66
    January 15, 2018 3:39 pm

    I’m shocked. i really thought he would have at least finished the year here.

  • been prepping myself for this, and even advocating this for 2 years. Just stripping away the logic and strategy and whatever else *for once*… man, i’m bummed out right now.

    • My sentiments exactly. It hit me harder than I thought it would.

      • it was weird. there was some dust storm that came by for a couple seconds. definitely had something in my eye.

    • Agreed. Had to happen.
      Go Bucs!

      • Why? You trade a player for a solid return – not a middle reliever and a lottery ticket. So many things could happen during the season. Cutch could catch fire again and a playoff team needs a bat all of a sudden. This is a poor return. I am not against the concept of trading Cutch, I am against the poor return. Wait out the market.

        • I think Tim responded to this line of questioning when he stripped all of our “emotional attachment” . It looks like a very solid return (since NH was unable to get the deal done last year) I like this trade, and wouls not be surprised to get a wash or even better as a result.
          Sad that Andrew’s time ended this way, but the trade was about dollars and hope with Reynolds. (The international $500k is not to be sneezed at, either)

    • The only reason Im bummed is that NH is the dealer of our biggest/most important yard sale. He already wrote the wrong price on our most expensive piece which is a public embarrassment to everyone associated and roots for the Pirates. Imagine how bad this return is going to be…what the hell is the point of having a good pen (which is certainly not a guarantee since it is full of a bunch of guys who can’t throw strikes) if your team is going to suck? Why are we not getting young talent?….we all know the answer to that, wd are not interested in the present or future…you can’t go half assed both ways you have to choose to go hard one way or the other…it’s clearly rebuild so why are we getting 10097557 shit question mark AAAA guys? This is retarded…I’m so embarrassed

      • Give it a year before slamming the return? If Moran starts and is anything close to an average regular for the next few years, we’ll have won the Cole trade. Doubt that happens, but it could

      • I’m not embarrassed

      • Couldn’t agree more. This is Bob Nuthing’s fault. They knew they were going to have a fire sale, but he stupidly entrusted it to Neal. He should have fired NH and hired a competent GM to oversee this “rebuild/retooling” or whatever this is.

        • Fans should have known a fire sale was going to happen after NH got that 4 year extension. He therefore is charged with overseeing the rebuild, for better or worse.

        • Hell yeah ! Look at the job Derek Jeter’s FO has done.

      • I would be embarrassed if I were you too.

  • Writing this before the return is announced so it may become mute but while this hurts it is the right move. It obviously depends on return but it’s best for the team and for him that he’s gone. Will always root for him.

  • Here we go!