SAN FRANCISCO -- Bruce Bochy has daily conversations with Farhan Zaidi, but as the schedule turned to July, the manager did his best to insulate the clubhouse from anything the Giants president of baseball operations might have been planning. Bochy is aware of trade discussions, of course, but he didn't feel like his team was distracted and needed any guidance.
"I never felt like I had to talk to anybody," Bochy said Wednesday. "They know this time of year you're going to hear rumors and speculation, but I never heard anything in there, including from the obvious one, Madison (Bumgarner). Their focus was on the field and that's a good thing."
That focus has helped the Giants get back into the wild-card race. With a sweep of the Rockies, the Giants have passed the Reds, Pirates, Rockies and Padres in the standings. Asked if he looks at the Wild Card standings, Bochy made a face and shook his head. But he admitted he has a general idea of where his team is at.
No matter how this ends up, this run could end up being huge for Bochy personally. First and foremost, the Giants are suddenly competitive in his final season. That's all he wanted all along, and if he's maneuvering to try and clinch a playoff spot in late September, it'll be a pleasant surprise for a man who had a hard time watching some of his team's play in the first half.
There's something else at play here, too. The recent run has gotten Bochy to 1,972 wins in his career. The Giants need to go just 28-38 down the stretch to get Bochy to 2,000 wins before he hangs them up.
That's not a number Bochy has ever talked about, but it would be a nice milestone. We'll see where the Giants end up in the standings, but at the very least their upward turn has made this final season a much better one for a Hall of Fame manager.