Andrew McCutchen was the worst starting center fielder in baseball by all statistical measures in 2016. Therefore, it wasn’t all too surprising to see two-time gold glover Starling Marte make the shift from left to center to start the year as McCutchen got demoted to right field. And now that we’re only 13 games into the 2017 season, the Andrew McCutchen experiment at right has officially ended – thanks in large part to Marte getting popped for PEDs.
McCutchen wrote about the move to right field at length in an article published in the Players’ Tribune back in February:
I have always told myself that one day I was going to move from centerfield. I would play there until I was older and wanted to move to less demanding position to to save my body and extend my career a couple more years.
Did I feel like it was already that time?
I have to be honest with you, Pittsburgh … No, I did not think it was that time.
And as one might imagine, those emotions came out in full display tonight after chasing down a fly ball at his old position.
It’s like a breath of fresh air to see McCutchen still so pissed off about this. Let’s all hope he carries this chip on his shoulder for the rest of the season because the Pirates need all the help they can get with Marte out for the next 80 games.