Posted on July 8, 2019, by Bryan Zarpentine
With the first half of the MLB season officially in the books, it’s time to start looking ahead toward trade season. One of the top players who appears to be on the trade block is San Francisco Giants lefty Madison Bumgarner. While he’s not having his best season, Bumgarner is by far the most established pitcher who is likely to be traded before July 31. Naturally, most teams that see themselves as competitors will have an interest in him. However, what teams are most likely to land Bumgarner in a trade? Let’s take a look.
Astros – 10%
Houston’s rotation is a little light beyond the trio of Justin Verlander, Gerrit Cole, and Wade Miley. They would surely welcome the depth and Bumgarner’s postseason experience. The Astros also have plenty of viable trade chips to swing a deal. However, they are one of eight teams on Bumgarner’s no-trade list, so they would have to convince him to waive his no-trade clause.
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Braves – 15%
The Braves are also on Bumgarner’s no-trade list, but they are a team to watch closely. Bumgarner grew up a Braves fan in North Carolina, so he might be more willing to waive his no-trade clause if it means going to Atlanta. Plus, despite adding Dallas Keuchel last month, the Braves are said to be showing serious interest in Bumgarner and would gladly add another lefty to help them close out the NL East and give them a postseason boost.
Brewers – 10%
The Brewers could definitely use a veteran like Bumgarner in their rotation. In addition to some injury questions, they didn’t get enough from their starters last October, which held them back. However, the Brew Crew is on Bumgarner’s no-trade list and they may be reluctant to spend what it takes to trade for him, especially with several other suitors.
Phillies – 15%
With sudden concern about Jake Arrieta’s health, the Phillies may need to trade for a frontline starter before the end of the month. Even if Arrieta were healthy, they would probably be in the market for rotation help. Given their offseason, look for the Phillies to be aggressive at the deadline. They’re also 6.5 games back in the NL East and at the top of a tight Wild Card race. After everything they did during the winter, the Phillies can’t afford to miss the playoffs, so they could make a hard push for Bumgarner to help prevent that from happening.
Red Sox – 10%
Rumor has it that Boston wants to trade for a starter and wants to do it sooner rather than later. They will surely be interested in Bumgarner despite already having three lefties in their rotation. Of course, they are also on Bumgarner’s no-trade list. Also, they would have to make a significant offer to make the Giants trade Bumgarner two or three weeks prior to the deadline before interest in him is at its peak.
Twins – 20%
The Twins have a huge advantage over most of the other teams in the Bumgarner sweepstakes because they are not on his no-trade list. Recent reports also indicate that Minnesota has genuine interest in him. He would be a huge addition for the Twins, who may have to hold off a second-half charge from Cleveland in order to win the AL Central. Most importantly, the Giants could negotiate with the Twins without worrying about asking Bumgarner to waive his no-trade clause, and that’s a big deal.
Yankees – 10%
There isn’t a lot connecting the Yankees to Bumgarner, but the Bronx Bombers can never be ruled out. They will do just about anything to win a World Series. Despite being in good shape, they’ll leave no stone unturned, especially with lingering questions about Luis Severino coming back later this season.
The Field – 5%
At the break, there are 20 teams within five games of a playoff spot, which means a lot of teams that could see themselves as one starter away from a postseason spot. Teams like the Rays, Rangers, Athletics, Cardinals, and Rockies could all make a push for Bumgarner. Most of those teams aren’t on his no-trade list, which could make it a little easier to swing a deal.
No Trade – 5%
The San Francisco front office has teased the possibility of the Giants keeping Bumgarner and trying to make a playoff push after they played well right before the all-star break. But that’s probably just posturing as a way to increase Bumgarner’s value. The Giants are 5.5 games out of a Wild Card spot and need to pass seven teams to get there. Unless they win 10 straight to begin the second half, there’s every chance Bumgarner will be traded by July 31.