It actually happened. The Arizona Diamondbacks have designated left-handed pitcher Madison Bumgarner for assignment, ending one of the worst multi-year stretches a full-time starter has endured over the past few decades. Have at it, Los Angeles Dodgers fans.
As he warms up to play third and bat cleanup in this evening's game against the Chicago Cubs, you just know that Max Muncy is chuckling to himself as he realizes that he singlehandedly forced Bumgarner out of a job.
We all remember the incident between the two of them back in 2019. Ever since that occurrence, the stats show that Bumgarner's performance on the mound began to dramatically decline.
Of course, Muncy is not to blame for this dramatic dropoff in stats for the longtime Giants ace, but it's hilarious to think about. As a matter of fact, Muncy is only 3-for-19 in his career off the lefty, with his lone home run being the one that "sealed Bumgarner's fate."
Dodgers fans loving that D-backs DFA'd Madison Bumgarner
For Bumgarner, his strange inability to get batters out truly did begin once he joined the Diamondbacks on that puzzling five-year, $85 million contract he signed prior to the 2020 campaign. After a highly successful 11-year stint on the division-rival Giants, he just felt out of place on any non-SF squad.
Statistically, the 33-year-old hasn't been anywhere close to league-average during his four-year tenure in the desert. In 69 starts, he went just 15-32 with a ghastly 5.32 ERA, 5.18 FIP and 80 ERA+. The ERA+ in particular suggests that he has been 20% below league-average, which is vastly different from when he was in San Francisco.
Bumgarner, a legend in the postseason, will likely latch on with another club in short order thanks to his veteran presence and past showings in games on the big stage. Clubs could conceivably aim to use him in a relief role to see if that helps him find his way, but he and his well-known ego may not take lightly to such a suggestion.
While Muncy takes on the Cubs Thursday night, Bumgarner will begin a search for a new job, which puts a nice bow on the rivalry that Bum was on the wrong side of the entire time. Score one for the good guys.