Giants

Mike Krukow shares positives of Giants hiring Gabe Kapler as manager

Mike Krukow shares positives of Giants hiring Gabe Kapler as manager

It’s been a whirlwind 72 hours for Giants president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi and the entire front office.

After selecting longtime Chicago Cubs executive Scott Harris as the team’s new general manager, San Francisco announced that the team has hired former Philadelphia Phillies manager Gabe Kapler to succeed Bruce Bochy as the Giants manager.

Giants broadcaster Mike Krukow endorsed the potential of Kapler taking over as manager in recent weeks, and doubled down on that sentiment Tuesday night on "SportsNet Central."

“He understands the expectation that, when you are the Giants manager, you’re expected to win,” Krukow said. “You’re expected to develop the culture of winning, and we all know in professional sports that at times, that can be a very elusive thing.”

Kapler has a strong previous relationship with Zaidi, as Farhan hired the former outfielder to be the Dodgers’ director of player development in 2014, and the pair oversaw a very successful overhaul of the organization’s minor-league system.

Krukow sees the strong relationship between the two as a good thing going forward.

“I think there’s going to be open communication, that will be positive,” Krukow said. “You’re going to need a consistency from your front office, you’re going to need a consistency from your general manager, from your president of baseball ops, from your manager to your coaches, that has to be on the same page.

“You have to have one goal that is united amongst the leaders.”

Giants fans hope the team's new trio of baseball operations hierarchy can mesh quickly, as the Giants look to build on a promising 2019 and get back to the postseason.

[RELATED: Zaidi addresses Kapler accusations after Giants hire manager]

“I think this guy is up to it, I do,” Krukow said. “I think the whole dynamic he brings is a positive one.”

You can see Krukow's full interview with Kelli Johnson on "SportsNet Central" in the clip above.

More on Kapler from NBC Sports Philadelphia

Leadership issues led to Kapler's firing
Kapler's reactions on final day of Phillies season
Bryce Harper's thoughts on Kapler's future
Kapler and Velasquez have miscommunication

MLB rumors: Cardinals 'entering the fray' to pursue Madison Bumgarner

MLB rumors: Cardinals 'entering the fray' to pursue Madison Bumgarner

With the Winter Meetings rapidly approaching, MLB free agency is heating up.

One of the top available pitchers -- Madison Bumgarner -- is expected to be in high demand, particularly now that Cole Hamels has signed with the Braves and Zack Wheeler reportedly has agreed to a five-year contract with the Phillies. For teams who scoff at Gerrit Cole's price tag, Bumgarner might be the logical compromise.

The Giants have been "in communication" with Bumgarner, but rumor has it another interested team has entered the mix.

MLB.com's Mark Feinsand reported Thursday that the St. Louis Cardinals have been linked to Bumgarner, citing a source.

St. Louis already has brought back veteran Adam Wainwright on a one-year deal, and after he, Jack Flaherty, Miles Mikolas and Dakota Hudson, there appears to be an opening for Bumgarner in the starting rotation. Signing with the Cardinals would not only allow Bumgarner to continue pitching in the National League, but would also allow him to continue taking his own at-bats, which we know he loves so much. He also has been linked to teams such as the Twins and White Sox, but would forfeit his at-bats to a DH in each of those situations.

[RELATED: How Wheeler's reported $118M contract could affect MadBum]

While Bumgarner is expected to receive a contract in excess of $100 million, Feinsand suggests Wheeler's reported $118 million payday might serve to increase the total.

MLB rumors: Yankees make signing free agent Gerrit Cole top priority

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MLB rumors: Yankees make signing free agent Gerrit Cole top priority

Gerrit Cole is far and away the gem of the 2019 MLB free-agent class.

The former Pirates and Astros ace led the American League in both ERA and strikeouts last season and finished just behind teammate Justin Verlander in the AL Cy Young Award race.

The team that historically always has had the deepest pockets in baseball -- the New York Yankees -- have made Cole a priority in free agency, ESPN’s Jeff Passan reported Thursday, citing a source.

Cole is a Southern California native with familial ties to the Giants, a team that also features one of the most pitcher-friendly ballparks in the MLB. San Francisco also has been mentioned as a destination for the ace, who reportedly desires a return to the West Coast.

But if the Yankees, who always have jumped to outbid every other team for talent in free agency, decide to back up the proverbial Brinks truck for the 29-year-old, the Giants might be swiftly eliminated from contention for Cole.

Reports indicate that Cole’s price tag will “shatter” the record set by David Price when he signed a $217 million contract with the Boston Red Sox in 2015.

[RELATED: Report: Giants targeted UGA's pitching coach for same role]

While San Francisco has plenty of money to spend this offseason, it likely won’t engage in a bidding war that could approach $300 million.

Even if longtime Giant and current free agent Madison Bumgarner elects to go elsewhere in free agency, it remains to be seen how much money San Francisco would be willing to shell out for an elite talent like Cole in the heart of his prime.