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.
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.