Sunday could be Madison Bumgarner’s last game with the San Francisco Giants, and if it was, he went out with a bang.
Just six pitches into his start against the Los Angeles Dodgers, Bumgarner served up a gorgeous bomb to Max Muncy, who admired his arcing shot as it landed in McCovey Cove. In classic Bumgarner form, he was not having it.
The southpaw walked towards Muncy and barked at him, saying “Don’t watch the ball, run,” until home plate umpire Will Little ran over and had to calm him down.
Bumgarner vs. The Dodgers tends to get a little heated: pic.twitter.com/WSMPwWEEkX
— Alex Pavlovic (@PavlovicNBCS) June 9, 2019
Muncy was all smiles after the game, as his home run proved to be the only scoring in the 1-0 pitcher’s duel. And to put a cherry on top of it all, he revealed his response to Bumgarner yelling at him.
— SportsNet LA (@SportsNetLA) June 9, 2019
Bumgarner is one of the main upholders of the unwritten rules of baseball — read “sore loser” — and does not like being shown up after giving up home runs. However, he does not have the same rules for himself, since he apparently is happy to flip his bat, pump his fist, or take his time leaving the box after a big shot of his own.
“I can’t even say it with a straight face, but the more I think about it, I should just let the kids play,” Bumgarner said after the game, via The Athletic’s Andrew Baggarly. “But I just, I can’t. They want to let everybody be themselves, then let me be myself. That’s me.”
The four-time All-Star has a particularly strong history with the Dodgers, where he’s beefed with Yasiel Puig since the outfielder’s first season in 2014.
Bumgarner hit Puig after Puig homered (and flipped his bat) against him in 2014, and he infamously yelled, "Don't look at me!" at Puig in 2016. Bumgarner continued to be annoyed by Puig’s excitement even after the outfielder was traded to the Cincinnati Reds over the winter when he made snide comments after giving up yet another homer last month.
At least now we know it’s not just Puig that annoys Bumgarner. It could be any player that has the audacity to celebrate a big hit.
Could this be MadBum’s last game with the Giants?
With Bumgarner in the final year of his contract and the Giants in a rebuilding mode, there has been plenty of buzz about a trade coming in the near future. Those rumors have hit a fever pitch lately with reports of the New York Yankees heavily scouting the 29-year-old.
The Yankees just missed out on signing fellow All-Star lefty Dallas Keuchel, so Bumgarner would be a natural replacement. Luis Severino, Domingo German and Jonathan Loaisiga are on the injured list, and lefties James Paxton and CC Sabathia only recently came back from injuries.
Bumgarner does have eight teams on his no-trade list, including the Yankees, so that could complicate things. But any contending team that was interested in Keuchel would likely be interested in Bumgarner as well, assuming they can match the Giants’ reported four-prospect return for a multi-month rental.
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