New York Yankees

MLB rumors: Dodgers shifting focus to Madison Bumgarner in free agency

MLB rumors: Dodgers shifting focus to Madison Bumgarner in free agency

Heading into free agency, the Giants made it clear that Madison Bumgarner had earned the right to go anywhere he wanted. A couple days into the Winter Meetings, that sentiment likely remains the same, but they'd be lying if they said they didn't have a preference where he ended up.

Now that Gerrit Cole reportedly has agreed to a record-breaking nine-year contract with the New York Yankees, San Francisco apparently inched closer to its greatest nightmare.

The rival Dodgers were considered to be a finalist for Cole, and apparently they didn't waste any time pivoting once the news broke. Giants fans really, really, really won't want to hear the direction in which Los Angeles reportedly is pivoting, though, according to The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal.

If you need to go rinse the vomit taste out of your mouth, go for it. You're certainly not the only Giants fan doing so.

After everything Bumgarner achieved in San Francisco, it's unbearable to think of him exchanging his orange and black for Dodger blue. I mean, think of all the run-ins Bumgarner has had with LA over the years. Yaisel Puig. Max Muncy. Go get it out of the ocean? How about we just get this rumor out of here.

Yuck.

[RELATED: New Giants prospect Wilson already hates rival Dodgers]

Bumgarner is expected to receive a contract in excess of $100 million, and the Dodgers certainly have the ability to afford him. So do the Giants, though, and as NBC Sports Bay Area's Alex Pavlovic notes, they might be forced to revisit the situation due to their rival's reported interest.

And guess which two teams face each other on Opening Day?

The Giants are used to seeing MadBum take the mound on the first day of the season. For the sake of all that is good and holy, let's hope they don't have to learn what it's like to go against him in that situation.

MLB rumors: Gerrit Cole, Yankees agree to nine-year, $324M contract

MLB rumors: Gerrit Cole, Yankees agree to nine-year, $324M contract

Well, so much for being the mystery team.

Whatever slim hopes the Giants had of signing free-agent pitcher Gerrit Cole reportedly evaporated Tuesday night, as he and the Yankees have agreed to a nine-year contract according to MLB Network's Jon Heyman.

New York has long been seen as the favorites to land the highly-sought-after ace, and the reported $324 million given to Cole blows away the record for the largest average annual value of a pitcher's contract in MLB history, previously set Monday when Stephen Strasburg and the Nationals agreed to a seven-year, $245 million contract.

The Giants expected to add at least one starting pitcher at the Winter Meetings, and while that was accomplished by Tuesday's signing of right-hander Kevin Gausman to a one-year contract, it doesn't rule out another.

Clearly, though, it won't be Cole.

[RELATED: How Giants can take advantage of penny-pinching teams]

Considering the Dodgers were thought to be a legitimate contender for Cole's services, though, this definitely isn't the worst possible outcome for San Francisco.

MLB rumors: Giants 'likely' a Gerrit Cole mystery team in free agency

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MLB rumors: Giants 'likely' a Gerrit Cole mystery team in free agency

The New York Yankees, Los Angeles Dodgers and Los Angeles Angels reportedly are the favorites to land Gerrit Cole, but they might not be the only teams pursuing the ace. 

MLB Network's Jon Heyman tweeted earlier Tuesday that there was a "mystery team" pursuing Cole. MLB.com's Mark Feinsand tweeted Tuesday night that the Giants and Houston Astros "likely" are the mystery teams trying to sign Cole, but they face stiff competition. 

Cole finished second in AL Cy Young voting in 2019 behind then-Astros teammate Justin Verlander. The UCLA product posted a 2.50 ERA and 0.90 WHIP in 212 1/3 innings with Houston, going 20-5 and striking out a career-high 326 batters. Cole is expected to command over $300 million, which could be too hefty a price for the rebuilding Giants. San Francisco appeared to open the door for the Angels on Tuesday, helping Los Angeles clear salary by acquiring oft-injured infielder Zack Cozart and 2019 first-round draft pick Will Wilson.

[RELATED: New Giants prospect Wilson already hates rival Dodgers]

But the 29-year-old has a San Francisco connection that can't be ignored. Cole's wife is Amy Crawford, sister of Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford. 

Giants president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi said the team hoped to leave the Winter Meetings with a new starting pitcher. The Giants signed Kevin Gausman on Tuesday, but it's possible they leave with another if they're able to out-bid Cole's reported suitors. Heyman tweeted Tuesday night that there is a "strong likelihood" Cole reaches a deal before the Winter Meetings end.