The Twins are looking for starting pitching and they haven’t hidden from that fact all winter. If they want to make Madison Bumgarner the highest paid pitcher in their rotation, though, their remain some “hurdles” to clear, according to a report from Jon Heyman.
#MNTwins are thought to be heavy on Bumgarner. They have a couple likely hurdles to clear, though; location and league.
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) December 11, 2019
That they’re interested in MadBum is not necessarily new. But new to me, anyway, is that Bumgarner apparently has such a strong preference to be in the National League and only in a specific location.
The preferred location is not clear. But if you want to go to an N.L. team, it would seem to me that there are only 10 teams trying to win in 2020: the Braves, Nationals, Mets, Phillies, Cardinals, Brewers, Cubs, Reds, Dodgers and Padres. At least 7 of those clubs have stated payroll concerns and/or an expensive starter already under their employ.
The Reds, Braves and Cardinals on that list have been reported as candidates to sign Bumgarner.
The 30-year-old lefty made 34 starts in what could be his final season in San Francisco. He had a 3.90 ERA, struck out 24.1% of hitters and walked 5.1% of them.
To note: Heyman addresses these as “likely hurdles” in this report. So whether that’s a Bumgarner bias or a media bias here is left to interpretation. And, of course, this time of year you have to consider that everything told to the media could be a ploy.
Oh, and another hurdle that emerged Tuesday night is the Dodgers. The club wanted to sign Gerrit Cole, and when instead he inked a massive contract with the Yankees, the Dodgers apparently had to shift their focus.
#Dodgers will now shift their focus to free-agent left-hander Madison Bumgarner, sources tell The Athletic.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) December 11, 2019
So, yes. There will be hurdles if the Twins want to make Madison Bumgarner a rich starting pitcher in their 2020 rotation.