How good has Andrew McCutchen’s rookie season been?

While working on today’s Futilitywatch, I had considered doing the history part of it on what seems to me to be a pretty unique line that Andrew McCutchen has put up during his rookie season. I scrapped that in favor of something more futility-related, but that doesn’t mean I can’t share the McCutchen stuff here.

Using Baseball-Reference’s invaluable Play Index, I went looking for rookies 22-years old or younger with at least six triples, nine homers, 15 stolen bases, and an OPS+ of at least 126 (Holy cherrypicked stats, Batman!). The stats are obviously cribbed right from McCutchen’s stat line this morning and they are incredibly cherry-picked so as to be nearly worthless for predictive value, but since I’m consistently blown away by ‘Cutch’s ability to hit for power, his speed, and the fact that he’s had such a well-rounded good season at the plate at such a young age, I wanted to see who else has had similar years.

The list is pretty short; Darryl Strawberry, Ken Griffey Jr., Vada Pinson, Ben Chapman, and Paul Molitor. None of them fit perfectly; Strawberry had more power, Chapman stole more bases, Pinson hit more doubles, and Molitor hit for a higher average. It is interesting, though, that three of my qualifiers were counting stats and McCutchen makes the list with about half as many games as anyone else on there. Actually, if you were to extrapolate his numbers out over a full-season, they’d probably most resemble Griffey’s, though he was 20 at the time.

I’m obviously not predicting ‘Cutch to have the same careers as any of these guys, but he’s having a very special season in his first year in black and gold.

About Pat Lackey

In 2005, I started a WHYGAVS instead of working on organic chemistry homework. Many years later, I've written about baseball and the Pirates for a number of sites all across the internet, but WHYGAVS is still my home. I still haven't finished that O-Chem homework, though.