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End of Madison Bumgarner era means beginning of rebuild

Nick San Miguel
Former Giants ace Madison Bumgarner. (Photo by Stephen Lam/Getty Images)
Former Giants ace Madison Bumgarner. (Photo by Stephen Lam/Getty Images) /
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Any hopes of Madison Bumgarner returning to the San Francisco Giants were extinguished on Sunday when he signed with the Arizona Diamondbacks. Now it’s time to start rebuilding.

One of the best pitchers in the history of the San Francisco Giants is now a member of the Arizona Diamondbacks. Longtime ace and World Series hero Madison Bumgarner signed a five-year, $85 million deal on Sunday, bringing to an end an 11-year run with the team that drafted him No. 10 overall back in 2007.

This is just added confirmation of what we knew all along. The Giants are rebuilding.

In case you have been asleep this offseason, the Giants have made it clear that they have no ambitions to contend in the near future. Some may applaud this Farhan Zaidi-backed rebuild, while others are scared of the direction the organization is headed.

Both views are valid.

Many believe the team has gotten itself in trouble by handing out bad contracts to aging players who they cannot get rid of when they begin to decline. It makes sense then that the new front office regime would be wary of handing out any significant contracts in free agency.

Some fans trust the analytical and cost-benefit approach that Zaidi brings. Others feel that the intangibles of the game like hustle, chemistry, and leadership are being replaced by things like WAR, OBP, and other statistics.

One way or another, the 2020s will mark a new era for the team.

Until all the pieces are in place, none of us truly knows if this rebuild will bear fruit, and at this point it’s a waiting game.

My head says that if it is done right, like it was with the Houston Astros or Chicago Cubs, then a rebuild can result in a lot of success.

My heart says that there are certain factors from those championship runs that should not be lost on the new leadership.

Keep in mind, at no point during the 2010s did the Giants have the most talented roster in baseball. Nor did they ever enter the postseason with the best record. They won because of great managing, clutch pitching, timely hitting, and a decent amount of luck.

Zaidi is still working out an equation on how to get the Giants back to contention. I was never much good at math, so my guess is as good at anyone else’s as to whether the end product will be another championship.

Next. Four middle infield targets post-Winter Meetings

One thing I can say with confidence is that we are embarking on a new chapter in San Francisco Giants history, for better or worse.

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