The Andrew McCutchen era lasted nine seasons in Pittsburgh, but the McCutchen era in San Francisco failed to make it to nine months.
The Giants sent their starting right fielder and cash to the New York Yankees in exchange for two prospects in a waiver wire trade Friday. ESPN’s Buster Olney first reported the agreement between the two sides Thursday.
San Francisco acquired infielder Abiatal Avelino and right-handed pitcher Juan De Paula, who were both ranked among the top 30 prospects in the Yankees’ system according to MLB.com.
Per a source, the Giants plan to promote top outfield prospect Chris Shaw to take McCutchen’s roster spot Friday. Shaw led the entire organization with 24 home runs at Triple-A Sacramento this year and was a first round draft choice in 2015.
McCutchen, who will turn 32 in October, leads the Giants in home runs (15) and RBI (55) and is batting .255. He consistently hit in the leadoff spot, but the Giants never made the playoff push front offices executives envisioned when they acquired him from Pittsburgh in January.
Avelino, 23, crushed Double-A pitching in 2018, posting a .945 OPS with 10 home runs in 49 games before he was promoted to Triple-A. Though he struggled to hit for power, Avelino picked up 38 RBIs in 74 games for the Yankees’ Triple-A affiliate.
De Paula, 20, started nine games in short-season rookie ball and owns a 1.71 ERA with 46 strikeouts in 47 1/3 innings.
The Giants placed McCutchen on revocable waivers August 20, but he went unclaimed, allowing San Francisco to negotiate a trade with any team through Aug. 31.
Because the Giants sent cash to the Yankees with McCutchen, who was in the final year of a 6-year, $51.5 million contract, it’s unlikely San Francisco will receive any salary relief by parting ways with him. General manager Bobby Evans indicated the franchise would remain clear of the $197 million luxury tax threshold regardless of whether McCutchen was dealt.
The veteran outfielder said last week he wasn’t concerned about a potential waiver wire transaction as he called his offseason trade from the Pirates to the Giants the most difficult move he would endure in his career.
San Francisco sent pitcher Kyle Crick and minor league outfielder Bryan Reynolds to the Pirates to add McCutchen in January.
The Giants will likely allow Shaw and rookie Austin Slater opportunities to play every day in the outfield in September. San Francisco may also reward pending free agent Hunter Pence with starts during what is expected to be his final month in a Giants uniform.