Every MLB team wants to win. Fans need to be reminded of this factoid from time-to-time as they analyze the moves of their team’s General Manager. On Monday, January 15th, we had one team pull off a trade, while another picked up a free agent as each try to inch closer to their respective division title. One was more successful than the other. The big name that was traded was Andrew McCutchen. The big name free agent signing was Curtis Granderson.
— MLB (@MLB) January 15, 2021
After being publicly ousted from his natural outfield position prior to last season, Andrew McCutchen has finally been traded by the Pittsburgh Pirates. For the wizardry they perform with reclamation pitchers, they butchered the handling of their star outfielder. Circle his return date to Pittsburgh on your calendar, May 11-13.
The San Francisco Giants were in desperate need of an outfielder. The Giants are in the awkward tweener ground of “If everyone is healthy, we will challenge for the division” and “a slow start should green light a complete tear down.” McCutchen is a good fit for the theory that the Giants are a playoff contender, much like the previous trade acquisition of Evan Longoria.
The Giants successfully inched closer to the Los Angeles Dodgers today.
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) January 16, 2021
Yes, you are right, Jose Bautista is no longer a 40 homer threat. Yes, you are right, it is time for the Blue Jays to move on from him. But Curtis Granderson?
Only a year younger than the expected soon-to-be ex-Blue Jay, Granderson has only batted over. 250 twice this decade. The last two seasons, when Bautista has dropped drastically, Granderson only beat JoeyBats by 0.003 in 2016 and 0.009 last season in batting average.
If WAR is your stat - again, only using the past two down years on Bautista - Granderson went 2.5 and a combined 1.4 respectively. Bautista went 1.0 and -1.7. Career wise (they both arrived on the scene in 2004), Granderson holds a 45.8 to 33.1, but it took Bautista until 2009 to figure out his swing.
Both were great players. Both are past their prime. This seems like moving a move for the sake of making a move by the Blue Jays.
The Blue Jays did not inch closer to the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees.