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Giants: Five players who won’t be on the Opening Day roster

PHOENIX, AZ - APRIL 02: Madison Bumgarner #40 of the San Francisco Giants high fives Brandon Belt #9 after Bumgarner hit a solo home run against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the fifth inning of the MLB opening day game at Chase Field on April 2, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
PHOENIX, AZ - APRIL 02: Madison Bumgarner #40 of the San Francisco Giants high fives Brandon Belt #9 after Bumgarner hit a solo home run against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the fifth inning of the MLB opening day game at Chase Field on April 2, 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
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San Francisco Giants
SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA – SEPTEMBER 24: Madison Bumgarner #40 of the San Francisco Giants pitches during the second inning against the Colorado Rockies at Oracle Park on September 24, 2019 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Daniel Shirey/Getty Images)

LHP Madison Bumgarner

I’m less confident in this choice than all the others. The biggest factor will inevitably be how much money Madison Bumgarner wants.

Does he prefer to return to San Francisco or is money the motivating factor?

Bumgarner is going to be 31 next season. Because of how many years he will likely command, bringing him back just doesn’t seem to be the smartest business decision for the Giants. I won’t complain if they do, it just doesn’t seem to be the M.O. of the new front office to give him a giant contract in the midst of retooling the roster.

A younger frontline pitcher? That’s a different story.

I’d be willing to bet money the Giants go in for a guy like Stephen Strasburg or Gerrit Cole over giving a giant contract to MadBum, who hasn’t consistently been an ace the last three seasons and has a lot of mileage on his arm.

Most of the early wave of “free-agent prediction” have Bumgarner going elsewhere, with virtually none of them predicting that he’ll stay.

I’m inclined to agree that he won’t be pitching at China Basin in 2019, at least not in a San Francisco Giants uniform. We’ll save the eulogies for later, but this one seems increasingly likely.

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