Giants

Madison Bumgarner makes it clear he's no fan of Giants using openers

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USATSI

Madison Bumgarner makes it clear he's no fan of Giants using openers

SAN FRANCISCO — Madison Bumgarner’s teammates know the deal once the offseason comes. He’s famous among them for disappearing to his sprawling North Carolina property, and teammates know better than to try to send him trivial texts in the middle of the winter. 

Joe Panik joked about that at FanFest on Saturday, but a few moments later, manager Bruce Bochy smiled and revealed that he did get a text from his ace this offseason. It came after new president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi told reporters at the Winter Meetings that the Giants could use an “opener” at times this season.

“If you use an opener in my game I’m walking right out of the ballpark,” said Bumgarner’s message to his manager. 

Bochy said he texted Bumgarner back and told him it all depended on how he was pitching. He laughed and said he could not repeat Bumgarner’s next response.

The Giants, of course, will not use an opener in front of Madison Bumgarner. 

They probably won’t use an opener at all. Zaidi is intent on finding creative solutions to some of the team’s issues, but after bringing Derek Holland back and signing Drew Pomeranz, the Giants have enough starting depth that they won’t have to resort to new methods.

[RELATED: Bryce Harper praised Buster Posey during lengthy Giants meeting]

Zaidi made it clear in December that he wouldn’t mess with stars like Bumgarner, anyway. 

Still, the idea made for some interesting conversation during a slow offseason. And now we know it was swiftly rejected by Bumgarner. 

For National Puppy Day, here are some dogs embracing America's Pastime

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USATSI

For National Puppy Day, here are some dogs embracing America's Pastime

There are calendars out there dedicated to "fake holidays." And by fake holidays I mean there are some weird days dedicated to those most random things you can think of. 

Did you know there's an "Old Stuff Day?" Or even an "If Pets Had Thumbs Day?" That last one actually sounds pretty great. 

But today is #NationalPuppyDay, and it's a very important day because we discovered a bunch of GIFs (soft "G") of dogs embracing baseball.

You're welcome ahead of time.

This is Buster Posey's No. 1 fan and permanent (let's hope only semi-permanent) wearer of his jersey:

The A's hosted Bark in the Park night with ... surfboard-riding dogs:

Yes, this was an actual thing and I bet you're feeling pretty upset you missed out on it. 

Here is a dog on a kayak in McCovey Cove that also possesses a small BBQ:

Here is another very good dog getting a stick in the cove:

Sensing a theme here ... 

This is Reba and she's amazing and makes the infield at the Oakland-Alameda Coliseum look extra perfect:

Here's a Giants' dog that chose to forego the water and instead skateboard around the park. As one does:

Here's an A's dog -- with green hair.

What that as fun for you as it was for us? We thought so. 

Bruce Bochy, Ned Yost reflect on touching moment after 2014 World Series

Bruce Bochy, Ned Yost reflect on touching moment after 2014 World Series

SAN FRANCISCO -- A few minutes after his team lost the 2014 World Series in a heartbreaking way, Royals manager Ned Yost walked over to the visiting clubhouse at Kauffman Stadium and quietly slipped into Bruce Bochy’s office. With champagne still flying through the air and players getting deep into their celebrations, Yost and Bochy shook hands and had a brief conversation.  

The show of class and sportsmanship meant a lot to the winning side. That moment meant even more to Yost. 

“I’ve still got that picture hanging in my office,” he said recently. “I don’t have many pictures that I put up, but there’s that one of me and him shaking hands afterward. That one is special to me. It was a hard time because he was trying to celebrate, but I just wanted to tell him congratulations.”

Yost’s Royals will face Bochy’s Giants today in Cactus League action, and it will almost certainly be the final matchup between their teams. Bochy has announced his intention to retire, and neither team is favored to reach the postseason.

That 2014 matchup was a memorable one, though, and it still leaves Yost shaking his head. A day after Bochy announced that 2019 would be his last season, Yost, at an MLB event, recalled thinking he had gotten the better of Bochy. 

“I just remember him sending Bumgarner out in Game 7 and I just thought, ‘Okay, we’re going to kill him.’ And it just didn’t turn out that way,” Yost said. “Even to send Bumgarner out there in the ninth, it was like, ‘whoa,’ but it worked out perfectly.”

Yost and the Royals would win the next year, getting their own moment in the sun. But on that cold October night in Kansas City, Yost watched Bumgarner get out of a jam in the ninth. He watched Bochy celebrate, and then he went over to congratulate a manager he says is a surefire Hall of Famer. 

[RELATED: Bochy announces he will retire after 2019 season]

“I just have the ultimate respect for him. I’ve always admired him, his longevity, and what he has been able to do,” Yost said. “The one solace I can find, as tough as it was to lose a World Series, especially when you’re 90 feet away, is just that I lost it to my boyhood team and to a manager who I probably have more respect for than any other present manager in the game. 

“He’s right behind Bobby Cox for me. He’s accomplished everything that every manager looks to accomplish.”