{}
CLOSE

Now Commenting On:

McCutchen's aggressive baserunning pays off

|
McCutchen's aggressive baserunning pays off play video for McCutchen's aggressive baserunning pays off

PITTSBURGH -- At about 8:45 p.m. ET on Wednesday, Andrew McCutchen might have been regretting having spoken so openly about being more aggressive on the bases in 2013.

Hector Rondon, or someone giving the reliever directions from the Cubs bench, seemed fixated on that promise. McCutchen drew a leadoff walk and spent most of the rest of the inning on his stomach, diving back to first base to survive pickoff throws.

"My legs were getting tired. All that on a cold night," McCutchen said.

At the time, McCutchen also had a thought: "I am going to get to second, so he can't throw for me anymore."

After Pedro Alvarez and Gaby Sanchez had both struck out, McCutchen did take off. Lowering himself into the headfirst slide he now uses, he again found himself on his stomach, but this time looking at Starlin Castro's knees. The Chicago shortstop had moved in front of the bag for catcher Welington Castillo's short throw.

The ball and McCutchen both reached the bag about the same time.

"Not good when all you see in front of you are the guy's legs," McCutchen said. "I just curled up and went in with my arms folded. Then I saw the ball just laying there so, 'OK, I'm in.'"

The steal was No. 100 of his career, and made him 2-for-2 in this young season.

"Small sample, but very encouraging to see," manager Clint Hurdle said of McCutchen pushing the envelope on the bases. "Actions speak louder than words. In the winter, we talk about a lot of things, and his intent is to make the words jump off the paper and become real."

Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog Change for a Nickel. He can also be found on Twitter @Tom_Singer. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

{}
{}
Boys and Girls Club of America

©2014 MLBAM, LP. All rights reserved.

The following are trademarks or service marks of Major League Baseball entities and may be used only with permission of Major League Baseball Properties, Inc. or the relevant Major League Baseball entity: Major League, Major League Baseball, MLB, the silhouetted batter logo, World Series, National League, American League, Division Series, League Championship Series, All-Star Game, and the names, nicknames, logos, uniform designs, color combinations, and slogans designating the Major League Baseball clubs and entities, and their respective mascots, events and exhibitions. Use of the Website signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy (updated May 24, 2013).

View MLB.com in English | En Español