New San Francisco Giants president Farhan Zaidi floated the notion of the team using an “opener” in the 2019 season, but his most prominent starter is not a fan.
Giants manager Bruce Bochy revealed at Saturday’s fanfest that Madison Bumgarner had heard Zaidi’s opener comments, and made clear immediately to Bochy what he thought of the idea.
Some teams, most prominently the Tampa Bay Rays, used an “opener” — a reliever who faced a lineup once through before bringing in a starter in the second or third inning to handle the bulk of the middle innings — in response to the fact that starters are at their worst the third time through an order. Bumgarner, whose name popped up in trade rumors during the offseason, is a gamer who wants to go all nine innings every time he gets the ball. It’s no surprise that he’d hate that kind of idea.
Madison Bumgarner trade rumors continue to linger, and one report says that there is a clear suitor if the San Francisco Giants opt to deal their left-handed ace.
According to Jon Morosi of MLB.com, the Giants have had substantial discussions with the Milwaukee Brewers about a Bumgarner trade, and the Brewers are still privately considering how willing they would be to give up the sort of young talent that would be required to make the deal happen.
Morosi notes that the Philadelphia Phillies also have some interest in Bumgarner, but are more focused on adding through free agency rather than via trade.
A Bumgarner trade still seems less likely now than it did earlier in the offseason. The Giants may wait until the season to deal him, as they’d have a broader group of potentially interested teams. The only downside is they’d be gambling on him staying healthy during the season. Milwaukee sounds like they could put together a prospect package now to make it happen and fill a need, as their rotation lacks top-end talent.
Madison Bumgarner’s name has come up throughout the offseason as a potential player on the trade market, but it seems like he is more likely to remain with the San Francisco Giants for now.
MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand said on Tuesday that it’s unlikely Bumgarner gets traded this winter. Instead, the Giants may opt to start the season with him and trade him during the year if they’re not contenders.
That makes sense. The Giants should give themselves a fair shot to see how they perform in 2019, especially with the Diamondbacks trading Paul Goldschmidt and the Dodgers not looking to add any payroll. A strong trade market should still exist in-season if the Giants want to trade Bumgarner at that time. The 29-year-old lefty is only set to make $12 million next season and is one of the most successful postseason pitchers in history.
The MLB Winter Meetings are just around the corner, and the expectation is that they’ll be busy. In addition to the obvious — both Bryce Harper and Manny Machado are free agents who could sign during the meetings — there are also likely to be a whole host of names potentially available via trade. In the past, the Winter Meetings have been the site of some real blockbuster deals, and 2018 may be no different.
But who may move? Here are ten names who could change teams during the Winter Meetings.
10) Yasiel Puig, Dodgers
Puig remains a good player, flaws and all, but a rather expensive one. He’s also not exactly a vital piece to the Dodgers at this point — he has a lot of use, but the team has a lot of outfielders hanging around. Ultimately, there are a lot of reasons Puig makes sense as a trade chip, potentially for a bigger piece. While it’s pure speculation, there has been a lot of conjecture over how much sense a potential swap of Puig for Corey Kluber or Trevor Bauer would make.
The trade market for Madison Bumgarner is starting to emerge, and a few teams are involved.
According to MLB Network’s Jon Morosi, the Philadelphia Phillies and Milwaukee Brewers are teams that have talked with the Giants about Bumgarner.
Bumgarner is under contract for next season at only $12 million, but he becomes a free agent after that. The 29-year-old has a career 3.03 ERA and is a four-time All-Star. He’s 8-3 with a 2.11 ERA in his postseason career and has helped carry the Giants to three World Series titles.
A previous report said the Giants are unlikely to trade Bumgarner, but new team president Farhan Zaidi has said he will not rule it out.
The Phillies could use a lefty ace after missing out on Patrick Corbin. The Brewers pushed the Dodgers to seven games in the NLCS last season and could use a top-end starter.
The San Francisco Giants have seemed open to the possibility of trading stud left-hander Madison Bumgarner this winter, but it does not sound like that is likely to happen.
Jon Heyman of Fancred Sports said Friday that a Giants source he spoke with does not envision Bumgarner being moved.
Bumgarner, 29, is under contract for $12 million for the upcoming season and is set to become a free agent after that. He has helped lead the Giants to three World Series championships, but new GM Farhan Zaidi said earlier this offseason that he will not rule out trading anyone. San Francisco won just 73 games this past season and 64 in 2017.
The Giants have reportedly discussed trading Bumgarner with at least two teams, but they are likely seeking a massive package of prospects. If teams sense that San Francisco is rebuilding and is unlikely to sign Bumgarner to an extension beyond 2019, they’re probably better off waiting for the price to drop or for the four-time All-Star to become a free agent.
The San Francisco Giants seem willing to part with pitcher Madison Bumgarner.
MLB.com’s Jon Paul Morosi reported on Monday that the Giants have had trade talks with at least two teams regarding Bumgarner. He says the Milwaukee Brewers and Philadelphia Phillies are among the teams that have shown interest in Bumgarner. Morosi says the Braves have also expressed interest in Bumgarner in the past.
Bumgarner, 29, is under contract for $12 million for the upcoming season and is set to become a free agent after that. The Giants have hired Farhan Zaidi to lead the team, and as an outsider now joining the organization, he may be the kind of person without sentimental ties to the franchise icon and able to deal the ace.
Bumgarner has a career 3.03 ERA and is a four-time All-Star. He’s 8-3 with a 2.11 ERA in his postseason career and has helped carry the Giants to three World Series titles.
Madison Bumgarner has helped the San Francisco Giants win three World Series championships and is one of the most dominant postseason pitchers of his generation, but it is not out of the question that the team could move on from him during a rebuilding phase.
New Giants president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi, who served as the general manager for the Los Angeles Dodgers over the past four seasons, had high praise for Bumgarner on Wednesday but would not rule out trading the left-hander.
Bumgarner is owed a team-friendly $12 million in 2019 before he will become an unrestricted free agent. The Giants won just 73 games this season and 64 in 2017, and they are currently one of the worst teams in baseball. If Zaidi feels they are a few years away from being competitive, signing Bumgarner to a massive free agent deal may not make a ton of sense.
Of course, Bumgarner is one of the most popular players in Giants history. The 2014 World Series and NLCS MVP has a record of 8-3 and a 2.11 ERA in the postseason. While his success on the big stage is undeniable, San Francisco has to get to the playoffs for any of that to matter.
Zaidi just watched his former team extend one of its most important players, but the Giants are in a much different place than their biggest rival. If Zaidi has a chance to get a major haul in return for Bumgarner, he wouldn’t be doing his job if he didn’t at least consider it.
Madison Bumgarner denied throwing at Ryan Braun intentionally despite hitting him with a pitch that led to benches clearing between the Milwaukee Brewers and San Francisco Giants on Sunday.
Bumgarner threw two pitches high and/or inside on Braun in a row during the bottom of the sixth and then hit him with the third pitch. Players spilled out onto the field after Braun was hit, while Craig Counsell and Wade Miley were ejected from the game. The next batter was Jonathan Schoop, who hit a game-changing grand slam.
Counsell made it clear after the game that he thought Bumgarner hit Braun intentionally, while the Giants denied that, saying the pitcher was just trying to challenge a dangerous hitter inside.
Braun felt Bumgarner was throwing at him and thinks it had to do with a comment made after Braun’s second at-bat in the game.
Braun and the Brewers got the last laugh with a 6-3 win and have the second-best record in the NL.
With the San Francisco Giants quickly sinking in the NL West, they may have to consider doing the unthinkable at this year’s trade deadline.
Bryan Murphy of McCovey Chronicles cited a reported message from an industry source on Monday which read, “Word on the street is that everyone is on the chopping block minus [catcher Buster] Posey and [shortstop Brandon] Crawford.” The message was in obvious reference to the San Francisco roster.
There are certainly a number of notable Giants who could presumably be dealt in that scenario (Brandon Belt, Johnny Cueto, etc.). But perhaps the biggest name would be beloved lefty and career-long Giant Madison Bumgarner.
The 28-year-old Bumgarner, who was drafted by San Francisco back in 2007, is a marquee fan favorite and even arguably the face of the team. He has made a total of four All-Star teams in a Giants uniform and was key to all three of their titles in the last decade, including winning World Series MVP in 2014.
Bumgarner has fallen off a bit in the last couple of seasons however and has a $12 million club option for 2019. Some indications are that talks on a possible extension could be rather dicey, so the Giants may unfortunately have to think long and hard about MadBum’s continued future with them.