The New York Yankees have long been viewed as a hypothetical landing spot for San Francisco Giants ace Madison Bumgarner. Now there are rumors linking the two sides.
It is all but a foregone conclusion that San Francisco Giants ace Madison Bumgarner will be playing somewhere else before the trade deadline passes on July 31.
Could the New York Yankees be his ultimate landing spot?
On Sunday, Ken Davidoff of the New York Post wrote of the Yankees: "They have spoken with the Blue Jays about starting pitcher Marcus Stroman, an industry source said, and they have scouted Giants veteran lefty Madison Bumgarner, whose contract gives him the right to block a trade to the Yankees."
This comes on the heels of free agent Dallas Keuchel, who was viewed as a potential fit for the Yankees in their search for bullpen help, signing with the Atlanta Braves.
Luis Severino is working his way back from injury, but finding starting rotation help still figures to be a priority for the Yankees this summer.
Will they be willing to pay what figures to be a steep asking price to acquire Bumgarner?
Mark Feinsand of MLB.com wrote: "Madison Bumgarner will be among the most prized trade targets in the league in the next month or two, but a source said the Yankees might not be enamored enough with Bumgarner to pay the necessary price."
That's fair, considering the 29-year-old is not the elite starter he once was, and the Giants will likely be looking for at least one elite-level prospect to add to their farm system.
Bumgarner has posted a 3.83 ERA and 1.16 WHIP with 84 strikeouts in 87 innings on the year.
He probably profiles best as a No. 2/3 guy on a contending team at this point, but his ability to eat innings and his impeccable postseason track record bolsters his value.
The presence of Stroman as a potential alternative for teams in search of top-tier pitching help is less-than-ideal for the Giants. That said, Stroman has team control through the 2020 season and will take a completely different type of return package to acquire than it will to land Bumgarner as a rental.
There is sure to be plenty more rumors swirling around Bumgarner in the days and weeks to come. After all, he is shaping up to be one of the prizes of the 2019 trade season.