It's been known for a while now that the San Francisco Giants are shopping left-hander Madison Bumgarner in the hopes that the team will find a fit by the July 31 trade deadline. Entering Wednesday, the Giants are 34-44 (.434), in last place in the National League West and looking like some of the most certain sellers in baseball.
Here are a few updates on Bumgarner, beginning with the New York Yankees' interest in the lefty ace:
MLB Network's Jon Heyman reports in the latest episode of the Big Time Baseball podcast that the Yankees are split on Bumgarner's value. According to Heyman, the team's decision makers like the idea of Bumgarner pitching for the Yankees in the postseason, especially given his past success, but it's the analytics that could wind up pushing the Yankees away from pursuing a trade for Bumgarner.
Bumgarner cemented himself as one of the best MLB postseason pitchers of all time. In 16 career playoff appearances, he has an 8-3 record with a 2.11 ERA. A three-time World Series champion, Bumgarner is confident he can repeat his performance with the same intensity. Here's what he told The Athletic on Monday:
"I'm the same guy I was in 2014, contrary to popular belief," Bumgarner said. "I know that gets said a lot, 'Oh, he's not the same guy he used to be.' That's just … wrong. Numbers are what they are right now, but let's just wait to the end of the season. And we'll check. Maybe they won't be there and maybe they will. All I know is, the last two years, the stuff was a little different rushing back from two injuries. Now? How I feel is the same. My stuff is the same."
In his age-29 campaign, here's how Bumgarner is faring:
Another factor in the decision is that Bumgarner is an impending free agent. Last week, The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal reported that the Yankees are not willing to trade outfielder Clint Frazier for a rental player.
In recent days, Marcus Stroman, Stroman, a New York native, has said that
Here's more from Heyman regarding the Yankees' top trade targets:
"[Max] Scherzer's the guy that the Yankees would love to get, but at this point, I'm going to say, basically, no chance, no way the Nats trade him. They're back in the race. He had a heroic outing with a broken nose. So I'm just not seeing him being traded, and that would leave [Marcus] Stroman and MadBum, who we mentioned, and [Matthew] Boyd … as three of the main guys."
And finally, ESPN's Jeff Passan reports that the Minnesota Twins have not engaged with the Giants on Bumgarner in recent weeks, and instead that the team is more focused on Giants reliever Will Smith. Passan adds that there is still a chance for a Bumgarner-to-Minneosta deal, but there is currently no traction.
While the San Francisco Giants’ interest in dealing Madison Bumgarner remains clear, the Minnesota Twins haven’t engaged with them in high-level talks in recent weeks, a source with knowledge of discussions tells ESPN. Giants reliever Will Smith is on the Twins’ radar as of now.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) June 26, 2019
Certainly the Twins could re-engage with the Giants on Madison Bumgarner. There is need for Minnesota, and the Giants will move when a deal is right. Presently, however, there isn’t any traction.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) June 26, 2019
While we still don't know where Bumgarner will be pitching after July 31, we do know that the 2014 World Series MVP certainly added to his trade value after his 11-strikeout against the Colorado Rockies on Tuesday. Bumgarner is scheduled to face the Diamondbacks on Sunday in his next start.