The Astros and Giants are “engaged” in discussions regarding San Francisco lefty Madison Bumgarner, according to Tim Brown of Yahoo Sports (Twitter link). Long considered a major rental starter for this summer’s trade market, Bumgarner’s availability has increasingly come in question as the Giants have unexpectedly risen in the standings.
While Brown cautions that there’s no indication as to the seriousness of the discussions, it seems notable that there’s dialogue at all. Surely, these teams have plenty of other doors to knock upon if Bumgarner is completely off limits. But it appears he’s still alive in talks — to some unknown extent, at least.
The Houston organization is one of the game’s more obvious buyers of starting pitching. It’s hard to imagine that the team won’t come away with at least one new rotation piece before the dust settles tomorrow. While longer-term assets are preferable, particularly given the upcoming openings in the Houston staff beyond the current campaign, it seems the ’Stros are open to all possibilities.
Bumgarner is one of several hurlers that have long been on the Astros’ radar. The club is still exploring multiple targets. Reports earlier today pegged it the favorite to land Zack Wheeler from the Mets — the other top rental starter to feature in trade chatter this summer. Controllable arms such as Matt Boyd and Robbie Ray have also been connected to Houston.