How Andrew McCutchen Engineered His Own Return To Pittsburgh

There's no doubt that Andrew McCutchen is happy to be back home in Pittsburgh. The former NL MVP while a member of the Pittsburgh Pirates is back where he belongs. And it really was all his doing. 

He went into free agency this offseason, and wondered if he had a chance to return to the place he called home for nine years, to the place of his five All-Star seasons and an MVP award in 2013. He says he personally sent a text to Pirates owner Bob Nutting early this month to see if he could return.

"I reached out to the owner myself, and I just wanted to let him know... that we tried to reach out, and I wanted to speak my piece on it... And one thing led to another and ya, I ended up here! So, it was great the way it turned out."

“I’m overly excited,” McCutchen said. “There’s not a word that really describes how I feel in this moment. This place is a part of me. There’s nothing like being back, seeing familiar faces.

“One of the coolest things I get to do is show my kids this is part of who I was and part of who I am,” McCutchen said. “They’ll get to see that and get to really feel it. It won’t just be a story that I tell ’em one day. They’ll get to be a part of it. I’m super grateful.”

He last played in Pittsburgh in 2017, before being traded to the San Francisco Giants. His production has waned over the last five years, but he's still at least an average hitter (per OPS+) and can certainly provide a leadership role that this young Pirates roster could definitely use. 

The 36-year-old is expected to be a DH primarily, with some chances to play the outfield as well.