As we begin the trade speculation season, we start with a controversial one for the San Francisco Giants in moving ace Madison Bumgarner.
Also, I’d like to mention that there are no current rumors of the Atlanta Braves pursuing Madison Bumgarner.
The main purpose of this article is to let San Francisco Giants fans know what a potential Madison Bumgarner trade could look like.
Obviously, a lot of teams will want to deal with the Braves this offseason because of all the young talent they have — especially in the pitching department.
Let’s start by looking at the value of Madison Bumgarner.
He’s entering his age 29 season and has one year left at $12 million before becoming a free agent.
The lefty has a career ERA of 3.03 over 1,638.1 major league innings with 1,591 strikeouts and a WHIP of 1.11. He’s also finished in the top six of the NL Cy Young voting three times.
More recently, Bumgarner has posted ERAs of 3.32 and 3.26 respectively the last two years, making a combined 38 starts in 2017 and 2018.
Before 2016 he made 30 starts or more in six straight years.
On top of that, Bumgarner has proven to be one of the best postseason pitchers in the history of the game, and he’s also good with the bat, which is a plus for National League clubs like the Braves.
Essentially, any team that trades for Bumgarner would be getting a top 15 pitcher in the game and a great competitor.
What might that cost the team that trades for him?
For just one year of a player, that certainly lessens the value of the package, but I still think Bumgarner requires a top-five prospect from a team and a couple of B-level prospects.
Looking at the Atlanta Braves, I would expect a return like this for Bumgarner.
Again, this is pure speculation as I have no idea how the Braves value those three prospects I mentioned.
But just going through the Braves top 30 prospect list on MLB.com: Wright is their number two prospect and the headliner of this deal as a former first-round pick, Waters is a B-level outfield prospect the Giants could use, and De La Cruz is a back-end prospect that has potential but needs work.
Whether or not the San Francisco Giants actually have interest in trading Bumgarner, and whether or not the Atlanta Braves are interested, I believe that is the type of return you can expect for the big lefty.