NEW YORK – With shoulder-length dreadlocks and a well-made beard, Andrew McCutchen spent his twenties and forced the baseball spotlight on the little Pittsburgh to shine.
Now a sharply cut McCutchen cross-country skiing comes to one of the biggest stages of the sport.
"I'll get used to getting used to my freshly shaven face," he joked on Twitter.
The playoff-competing New York Yankees won Friday the former NL MVP of the San Francisco Giants for two prospects. The teams announced the deal on the last day to carry out transactions so that players are eligible for the late season. McCutchen is expected to arrive on time to make his debut against Detroit on Saturday, when he will play the right field and bring in the injured Aaron Judge.
"We really get a good player," said manager Aaron Boone, adding that "I think his reputation precedes him, this is an equally characterful person as we are in our game and I know he will fit into our room."
McCutchen knows one of his new teammates already well – Neil Walker, who played with the then long-haired McCutchen in the minor leagues, then accompanied him in helping the Pirates to end a 20-year playoff drought in 2013. McCutchen won that season in NL MVP Award.
"I saw him for the three years that we made September, after the season, pushes his game to a higher level," said Walker. Not that he had to do that, but you saw him being the player he can be when he is in the spotlight, that's exactly what I expect when he gets in. & # 39;
Walker and McCutchen spoke Friday morning. McCutchen's dreadlocks have been gone for a few years, but he was worried about the beard he'd worn almost his entire ten-year career. The Yankees have years of policy that prohibits facial hair.
"I told him to shave his face," Walker said. "He was not very happy with that.
"But he's really excited, I'll tell you he's a man who wants to win more than anything."
The 31-year old McCutchen hits .255 with 15 homeruns, 55 RBI & # 39; s and 13 stolen bases. His .357 on-base percentage paths are only that of Judge (.398) and Aaron Hicks (.365) with qualified Yankees. He was a five-time All-Star with Pittsburgh.
McCutchen is the regular rightfielder of the Giants since he was bought outside Pittsburgh last season. He will fill that place for the Yankees, who have been without Judge since the end of July his wrist was broken by a throw. New York originally thought that Judge could return within three weeks, but five weeks later he still does not have a bat in a frustrating slow recovery.
"This is something that really helps us here and now," Boone said. "And even when Aaron returns, it's a really good player to give us options to match things as we want, it's just a really good player, but we believe Aaron will be back."
New York achieved the second best record in the majors and played 8 1/2 games behind AL East-leading Boston that started a game against Detroit on Friday-evening. The Yankees expect Saturday the injured catcher Gary Sanchez (groin) to activate and this weekend also short stop Didi Gregorius (whole-bruise) of the disabled list.
San Francisco gets infielder Abiatal Avelino and right hand Juan De Paula and also sends cash to New York. The Giants also agreed to send the Yankees $ 1.2 million for just under half of the $ 2.45 million remaining on McCutchen's salary of $ 14.75 million. McCutchen can become a free member after the season.
McCutchen thanked Giants fans on Twitter for the love and support you gave not only to me, but also to my family & # 39 ;.
"Now I am ready to throw up the chalk marks and go to work." Yankees let's go! "He added.
Giants executive VP of baseball operations Brian Sabean was sad to defeat McCutchen, but the Giants are 7 1/2 games behind Arizona for the NL West.
"I hope he wins a ring," Sabean said about McCutchen. "He has invested a lot in the game, he is the real deal, we need more McCutchens in the game."
Sabean said that San Francisco would consider signing McCutchen as a free agent this off-season.
The 23-year old Avelino hit a combined .287 with 15 homers, 66 RBIs and 25 steals on Triple-A and Double-A. He was ranked the 23rd best best of the Yankees by MLB.com.
The Paula is a 20-year-old starter who has pitched well with Staten Island of the short season, 2-2 with a time of 1.71 and almost a strikeout per inning. He is ranked as the 26th best candidate from New York on MLB.com.
Slugging prospect Chris Shaw was called by Triple-A Sacramento to fill McCutchen's place.