Pirates flexible in contract talks with All-Star outfielder McCutchen
TribLIVE Sports Videos
BRADENTON, Fla. — Although talks remain stalled, the Pirates are willing to work out a multiyear contract with center fielder Andrew McCutchen.
A team source Sunday told the Tribune-Review that the Pirates do not consider the initial gap of about $10 million between the sides to be insurmountable.
McCutchen, the No. 11 pick in the 2005 draft, turned down offers before the 2010 and '11 seasons. No substantial talks have been held since last year, when the sides were far apart on financial terms.
McCutchen's camp likes the $51 million deals given to Arizona's Justin Upton and Cincinnati's Jay Bruce, two other standout outfielders from the 2005 draft class. The Pirates prefer a package closer to $40 million. Sunday, the Washington Nationals and third baseman Ryan Zimmerman, the fourth pick in 2005, agreed to a six-year extension worth $100 million.
McCutchen, who made $453,000 last year, cannot become a free agent until after the 2015 season. But as his status continues to grow — he was an All-Star for the first time last year — the cost to sign him will skyrocket.
The team has until March 11 to set McCutchen's salary for this season. Next year, he will be arbitration-eligible for the first time and in line for a substantial raise.
Without commenting specifically about McCutchen, owner Bob Nutting said the Pirates have both the interest and financial flexibility to do long-term deals with key players.
"That's important and something we need to continue to look at," he said. "We are indeed reaching a point — it might not be an absolute urgency — but we absolutely have a commitment and desire to see that happen."
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Hammel, Cubs shut down Pirates, snapping 5-game winning streak
- Starting rotation powers Pirates’ surge
- Fan injured by flying bat at Pirates-Cubs game at Wrigley
- Pirates notebook: Hurdle says playing 1 position should benefit Harrison
- Gameday: Pirates at Cubs, April 28, 2015
- Pirates notebook: Wainwright injury doesn’t sway Hurdle on DH
- Burnett’s stellar start paves way for Pirates’ victory over Diamondbacks
- Behind starter Liriano, Pirates complete sweep of Diamondbacks
- Pirates’ Cole reinforces status as emerging ace
- Sawchik: Young Cubs could threaten for foreseeable future