San Francisco Giants star Madison Bumgarner was absolutely filthy against the New York Mets during his start on Thursday. He threw nine innings, allowed just one run, and only needed 94 pitches to do it.
These are very encouraging signs for any team looking to bring in Bumgarner at the trade deadline. Bumgarner hasn't exactly been an ace this season, but he's been very close to it as of late. He has a 3.65 ERA in 125.2 innings pitched, good for ninth in all of baseball in innings pitched (and that's all thanks to a 1.84 ERA in his last five outings).
Bumgarner is one of the best pitchers of this decade and arguably the greatest postseason pitcher of all time. Excluding his start where he left after two innings when he got hit with a comebacker, he has thrown three straight starts where he only allowed one run.
He's one of the top prizes on the trade market this year and has shown how to carry a team in October. There are only a handful of players who posses that type of ability, and with his recent resurgence, it certainly looks he'll be up for the task when the time comes.
Bumgarner has been adamant about the fact his main focus is on the Giants until he's told his time with them is over. He still believes the Giants can do something special and will hold that sentiment until a trade is official.
Some feel Bumgarner is not the same pitcher he was when he carried the Giants in the 2014 World Series, but this was also said about Justin Verlander and Cole Hamels. They were shipped off to contenders and returned to their dominant forms, so why can't that happen with Bumgarner, who is only 29 years old?
I think we'd all be crazy to think Bumgarner cannot match the same numbers he put up just a few years ago. This man lives to pitch in October.