The Golden State Warriors will have time to kill as they face the Utah Jazz in the Western Conference Semifinals, but one star player will be avoiding the pitfalls that got another big-name Bay Area athlete.
Guard Stephen Curry couldn’t help but take a shot at San Francisco Giants pitcher Madison Bumgarner when asked what he would do for fun on days off in Utah.
Bumgarner, of course, is out for several months after his off-day dirt bike expedition went awry.
The Warriors don’t seem to know what they’ll do on days off when they’re in Salt Lake City. It is safe to say that dirt bikes are a non-starter, not that any of them really needed the reminder.
Madison Bumgarner’s dirt bike accident may have repercussions even after he has recovered from the injuries sustained as a result.
According to John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle, the San Francisco Giants’ front office won’t forget about Bumgarner’s decision to get on a dirt bike during an in-season off-day, particularly when it comes to negotiating a future contract extension.
Comparisons between Bumgarner’s accent and what happened to Jeff Kent just before the 2002 season are popping up. Kent, then the Giants’ star second baseman, lied about breaking his wrist in a motorcycle accident, claiming he had hurt himself washing his truck before the truth eventually came out. Things turned sour between the player and organization, and he departed after the season on poor terms.
Things are better with Bumgarner, according to Shea, because the ace lefty was forthcoming about what had happened, though the fact that it occurred during the season works against him.
The Giants could try to recoup money from Bumgarner’s current contract, but such a move is unlikely. Bumgarner is already playing on a team-friendly contract and has been integral to the organization’s success since 2010, and such a move would likely be a PR nightmare.
Bumgarner’s poor decision is going to cost him significant time. One can understand why the Giants would be frustrated and upset, even if there isn’t really anything they can do about it.
San Francisco Giants pitcher Madison Bumgarner suffered an injury in a rather unique way that will probably annoy his bosses.
The Giants placed Bumgarner on the 10-day disabled list on Friday after the pitcher sustained rib and shoulder injuries in what the team described as a dirt bike accident.
FOX’s Ken Rosenthal reports he is expected to miss 6-8 weeks.
For the struggling Giants, who sit at 6-10, this is unwelcome news. Bumgarner is the team’s ace, and without him, they’ll find it a little bit harder to get back on track. It’s not just the injury but the nature of it — it sounds like this was quite avoidable. Bumgarner’s a country boy, though, and he’s gonna do what he wants — unless the Giants can get a clause prohibiting him from riding dirt bikes into his next contract. They may want to.
It didn’t take long for Madison Bumgarner to add to his growing legacy. He made history during the Giants’ first game of the 2017 season.
Bumgarner is regarded as one of the better hitting pitchers in baseball, and for good reason. On Sunday, he gave us another display why. In the top of the fifth inning against the Diamondbacks, Bumgarner hit a solo home run off of Zack Greinke to give the Giants a 2-0 lead. In the top of the seventh inning, Bumgarner was at it again with another solo home run, this time off of Arizona reliver Andrew Chafin.
Here’s video of both home runs.
With his performance on Sunday, Bumgarner became the first pitcher in major league history to hit two home runs in the same game on opening day. He also wasn’t bad on the mound, giving up six hits and three earned runs over seven innings while striking out 11 batters.
It’s certainly good to have baseball and Madison Bumgarner back.
Spring Training has kicked into high gear, with batters getting ready for the season and pitchers rounding into shape. Before we know it, the World Baseball Classic and spring ball will come to an end, and MLB games that actually count will begin.
Already this spring, we’ve taken a look at some early favorites to win Rookie of the Year awards. Continuing along those lines, we’ll move onto the pitchers.
Here’s a look at the top 10 favorites to win the Cy Young awards — five from each league.
5. Aaron Sanchez (Toronto Blue Jays)
Aaron Sanchez has established himself as the ace of Toronto’s starting staff, but 2017 will represent the year he truly breaks out and becomes a legitimate AL Cy Young candidate.
In his first full season as a starter, Sanchez finished with a 15-2 record, sporting an even 3.00 ERA and 1.17 WHIP, while striking out 161 batters in 192 innings pitched. And while he’s not exactly a strikeout king, his 7.5 SO/9 was also a substantial improvement over his numbers as a reliever.
With some experience now under his belt, Sanchez can settle into the always dangerous AL East and work on the few hiccups to his game. Chief among them is gaining more control over his pitches and limiting his walks, which topped out at 63 in 2016.
But with his innings limit likely to be removed — a limit that really hurt him down the stretch last season when his play become more inconsistent — we’ll get to see exactly who this budding superstar really is. And if his 2016 is any indication, we’re all in for a show.
4. Justin Verlander (Detroit Tigers)
Madison Bumgarner is signed through 2019, but that hasn’t stopped the San Francisco Giants from approaching his representatives about an extension.
Giants general manager Bobby Evans told reporters on Thursday that the team has already reached out to Bumgarner’s representatives to gauge interest in a new contract.
In the sense that Bumgarner is under team control through 2019, with two affordable $12 million team options covering the last two years on his deal, it’s a bit of a surprise. Of course, things have changed a bit since April 2012, when he signed that contract. He’s since established himself as one of the greatest playoff pitchers ever, as well as an elite celebration artist, so the Giants may see fit to reward him properly for what he’s meant to their franchise and lock him up while they have the chance well beyond 2019.
San Francisco Giants ace Madison Bumgarner has an uncanny ability to keep his composure even under the most chaotic conditions, so his reaction to Conor Gillaspie’s home run on Wednesday night really comes as no surprise.
Gillaspie’s three-run bomb off of New York Mets closer Jeurys Familia in the ninth inning was more than enough run support for Bumgarner to send his team to the NLDS. And the left-hander knew it right away.
Reactions like that show exactly why Bumgarner is so good in October. He’s boring, and we mean that as the highest possible compliment.
“(Mets pitcher Noah) Syndergaard was unbelievable,” Giants catcher Buster Posey said after the game. “But there was such a calmness in our dugout. And I think it’s safe to say Bum deserves a lot of credit for that.”
As Jayson Stark of ESPN.com notes, Bumgarner has now pitched eight road games in the playoffs. The Giants are a perfect 8-0 in those games, and Bumgarner has surrendered just three runs in 53 2/3 innings of work. He has also faced 24 hitters with runners in scoring position during those eight games, and not a single one of them has gotten a hit.
Let that sink in for a moment.
Not good enough for you? How about the fact that Bumgarner has not allowed a run in six of his 13 playoffs starts. That ties him with Tom Glavine for the record for scoreless postseason starts, and Glavine did it in 35 games. Bumgarner could have six complete-game shutouts by the time he makes that many starts.
It would not be premature to call Bumgarner the best pitcher in postseason history. The eye-popping statistics go on and on, and the 27-year-old seems to be getting even better. Regardless of the high praise he pays his opponents, Bumgarner is the best in the business with the season on the line.
Wednesday night’s National League Wild Card Game between the San Francisco Giants and the New York Mets may very well be a pitcher’s duel, and Madison Bumgarner knows it.
Bumgarner, who will be taking the hill for the Giants opposite Mets righty Noah Syndergaard, had high praise for his 24-year-old adversary in an interview with Chris Haft of MLB.com.
“He has probably the best stuff for a starter in all of baseball,” Bumgarner said of Syndergaard. “But no matter who you’re going up against, I gotta find a way to get that lineup out. That’s really it. It comes down to that one game. All the work we put in comes down to that.”
With an arsenal that includes a fastball that regularly tops 100 mph, a sinker that averages 97 mph, and a slider that can touch a ludicrous 94 mph, the numbers certainly back up Bumgarner’s claim. Using that nasty stuff, Syndergaard pitched his way to a 14-9 record this season with a 2.60 ERA and 218 strikeouts, despite having a bone spur in his elbow for much of the year.
Where Bumgarner holds the easy advantage however is in playoff experience. Though Syndergaard was strong in his first taste of postseason action in 2015, Bumgarner is entering his fourth career postseason with three World Series titles, one World Series MVP, a six-beer celebration, and a 2.14 ERA with seven wins in 12 lifetime playoff starts already under his belt. The 27-year-old October legend will hope that his track record of postseason dominance is enough to outweigh the raw talent of his younger counterpart Thor. Let’s just hope Syndergaard doesn’t look at Bumgarner the wrong way on Wednesday.
*Stats courtesy of FanGraphs*
Madison Bumgarner and Yasiel Puig got into it once again on Monday night, and Clayton Kershaw feels the San Francisco Giants ace is the one to blame for the latest confrontation between the two.
After Puig hit a weak grounder to end the seventh inning of the Los Angeles Dodgers’ 2-1 win over the Giants, Bumgarner was very animated in celebrating the out. He yelled “f– yeah!” and stared in Puig’s direction, which is why Kershaw thought Bumgarner was the antagonist.
In Bumgarner’s defense, the out preserved a 1-0 lead after seven. He had every right to be excited, and you can see a video of his reaction here.
Having said that, there is a lot of bad blood between Puig and Bumgarner, which is likely why MadBum was excited about retiring the outfielder in a crucial situation. He was probably trying to get a rise out of Puig, and it worked.
Stop me if you’ve heard this before: Yasiel Puig and Madison Bumgarner got into it again.
There was a dust-up between the two rivals on Monday night after Puig weakly grounded out to end the seventh inning of the Dodgers-Giants game.
Puig may not have liked Bumgarner’s celebration about getting the out, so the Dodgers outfielder stared down the Giants pitcher. The two exchanged words, and then other players from each team came out to see the situation:
Nothing more transpired, but there certainly were some fireworks.
Recall that the two had an incident in May 2014 and then another one that led to benches clearing in Sept. 2014. If you think about it, they really were just due for another exchange.