Coonelly: McCutchen’s struggles not related to bouts of left knee inflammation |

Coonelly: McCutchen’s struggles not related to bouts of left knee inflammation

Christopher Horner | Trib Total Media
Pirates center fielder Andrew McCutchen warms up on deck before batting during the first inning against the Reds Wednesday, May 6, 2015, at PNC Park.

Andrew McCutchen has had two bouts with left knee inflammation since the offseason, but he has told the Pirates the condition is not the reason for his batting slump.

“Andrew is insistent that he is not hurt and that his knee is not impacting his performance,” Pirates president Frank Coonelly said Wednesday.

The Pirates had not previously revealed the nature and location of McCutchen’s injury, describing it only as “lower-body soreness.”

Going into Wednesday’s game against Cincinnati, McCutchen was batting .185 with a .574 OPS. He’s had only three multi-hit games since going 2 for 4 on Opening Day.

During the offseason, McCutchen told the Pirates he felt soreness in his left knee. He flew to Bradenton, Fla., and was examined by the team’s medical staff. Exams uncovered inflammation, but no structural damage, in the knee.

McCutchen’s knee pain flared up during a spring training game. He missed nearly two weeks’ worth of Grapefruit League games, although he did some off-the-field work.

“The aggravation in spring training was done on the field during baseball activities,” Coonelly said.

Several sources told Trib Total Media that McCutchen is not getting any out-of-the ordinary treatment on his knee. McCutchen said his slow start at the plate is a mechanical issue, not something that could be cured by going on the disabled list.

“I don’t like days off,” McCutchen said Tuesday. “I don’t need that. I can see what’s off (with my swing). There’s a little disconnection. I’m doing what I can to correct it.”

Rob Biertempfel is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at [email protected] or via Twitter @BiertempfelTrib.

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