Friday, May 11, 2018
For Giants’ McCutchen, a hero’s welcome awaits in Pittsburgh
By Henry Shulman
May 10, 2018
PHILADELPHIA — During Andrew McCutchen’s painfully slow start with the Giants, Pirates fans flooded social media begging San Franciscans to be patient because “Cutch” usually has bad Aprils.
Pittsburghers love McCutchen the way a parent loves a child. Their heartache upon his trade to San Francisco was matched by the angst they felt for him having to leave his beloved home and move across the country.
No one need wonder how Pittsburgh fans will react Friday night when McCutchen returns to PNC Park. It will be a lovefest with tears on all sides.
Before the Giants concluded their four-game series against the Phillies on Thursday, McCutchen said he knows he will get a great reception, but has no idea how he will feel when it happens.
“I didn’t know how I was going to feel before I got married as my wife’s walking down the aisle,” he said. “I didn’t know how I was going to feel when my wife was having that child and I saw him for the first time. You can ask how you think you’re going to feel. I don’t know. I never experienced it before.
“I’ll be there, be in the moment and let the emotions be what they are. I try to live in the moment of everything. It’s newfound to me.”
To understand the significance of this homecoming, Giants fans would have to imagine Buster Posey being traded to the Pirates, then returning to AT&T Park for the first time.
Reliever Tony Watson, a longtime McCutchen teammate in Pittsburgh, said the comparison is not quite apt because of the three championships Posey helped bring.