A.J. Burnett probably wants to leave most of his Yankees memories behind in New York, but he’ll be sticking with the same jersey number. As is the case when any new player comes to town, Burnett had to strike a deal with a current member of the Pirates in order to keep his No. 34 jersey. Daniel McCutchen, the 29-year-old reliever who wore No. 34 in Pittsburgh last season, is planning for the future. That’s why he has agreed to give his number to Burnett if A.J. sets up a college fund for his unborn daughter, who is due in May.
“When a veteran comes in and takes a number, some of the guys usually get something,” McCutchen said according to the Post-Gazette. “I know he has kids. He asked me what I wanted, I brought that up. Eighteen years from now, we’ll see what the market is.”
Anyone can ask for cash or something materialistic in exchange for a jersey, but it’s nice to see McCutchen turning his situation into a long-term investment. Hopefully Burnett doesn’t become a bust with the Pirates and only fulfill part of the agreement like a certain quarterback in Minnesota seems to have done.
The amount is unknown at the moment, as the College America 529 plan’s true value won’t be determined until McCutchen’s daughter heads to college. Regardless of how much money he has to invest now and how much it costs him in the long run, it’s a deal Burnett should feel good about agreeing to.
H/T Hardball Talk