Andrew McCutchen doffs his batting helmet after recording his 2,000th career hit. Jun 11, 2023; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates designated hitter Andrew McCutchen (22) tips his cap to the crowd after hitting a single to register his 2000th career major league hit during the first inning against the New York Mets at PNC Park. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Andrew McCutchen has had a sweet reunion with the team this season, collecting some clutch hits, standing ovations, and his 2,000th career hit.

So he seemed as surprised as anyone to see his name surface in trade rumors Monday, when MLB Network’s Jon Morosi named the Pirates as likely trade deadline sellers and McCutchen as a “fascinating trade candidate.”

After Tuesday night’s 9-4 win over the San Diego Padres, reporters asked McCutchen about the speculation.

“They didn’t trade you yet?” one reporter joked to McCutchen. “What was your reaction seeing that?”

“That’s just what Twitter does, right?” McCutchen said. “Twitter twitters, right? It’s nothing. You get around this time of the season and people are going to start talking, you just have to take it with a grain of salt. I didn’t think much about it.”

The five-time All-Star, who left Pittsburgh in a trade after the 2017 season, returned with plenty of fanfare this season. But after a hot start, the Pirates have stumbled in recent weeks, leading to the speculation the veteran might go to a contender.

The “Twitter twitters” speculation aside, McCutchen said he wants to stay in Pittsburgh.

“I still want to be here,” McCutchen said. “But at the same time, that’s out of my control … all I can say is where I want to be.

“I’m just going to focus on where I’m at right now … I want to win here.”

The 36-year-old McCutchen has nine home runs and an .832 OPS in his return to the Pirates, the team that drafted him in the first round in 2005.

[Kevin Gorman, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review; Jon Morosi]

About Arthur Weinstein

Arthur spends his free time traveling around the U.S. to sporting events, state and national parks, and in search of great restaurants off the beaten path.