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Andrew McCutchen discusses Pirates trade rumors

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Following the Pirates’ 9-4 win over the Padres on Tuesday night at PNC Park, McCutchen brushed aside recent trade rumors and iterated his desire to win in Pittsburgh.

“That’s just what Twitter does, right? Twitter Twitters, right?” McCutchen said after going 3-for-5. “It’s nothing. You get around this time of the season, people are going to start talking. You have to kind of take it with a grain of salt. I didn’t think much about it. We just need to do what we need to do as a whole and as a club. It’s something I don’t need to worry about.”

McCutchen, on paper, fits the description of a trade candidate. The 36-year-old is on a one-year contract and in the midst of his best offensive season since 2015, slashing .278/.397/.435 with nine home runs, nine steals and a 131 wRC+. With the Pirates in fourth place in the NL Central, there is certainly no shortage of teams that will express an interest in adding McCutchen to their roster in the pursuit of a championship.

That said, McCutchen’s circumstances are far different than that of the typical trade candidate given his relationship to the team and to the city. The Pirates (36-42) may reside in fourth place and have lost 12 of their last 14, but McCutchen pointed out that they’re only five games out of first place with a lot of season remaining.

“I’ve vocalized how I felt about being here and the reason why I came back. That stance hasn’t changed,” McCutchen said. “I still want to be here regardless. At the same time, that’s out of my control. I can’t control that. That’s not my call. It’s not like I have a no-trade clause or anything like that. That’s not on me. All I can say is where I want to be. At the end of the day, that has nothing to do with where I end up. I just need to focus on where I’m at right now. That’s here.

“I want to win here. I want to be here. That’s what I’m going to focus on. Just going to keep continuing to prepare and be here, and us to try and do our best to go out there and win ballgames and get ourselves back in this race, because we’re not far away from it. Anything can happen in this division. We all know that.”

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