3 reasons the Cubs should not pick up Madison Bumgarner
News broke on Thursday that the Arizona Diamondbacks are parting ways with Madison Bumgarner, designating the veteran left-hander for assignment. It is a somewhat surprising move considering Bumgarner is the highest paid player on the team in terms of average annual value, and he is set to make $23 million this season.
That doesn't even take into account Arizona is still on the hook to pay him another $14 million next year before he reaches free agency. However, the Diamondbacks have seen enough of the tall southpaw after just four starts this season, and he will need a new team to pitch for. But that team should not be the Chicago Cubs for a multitude of reasons.
3 reasons Madison Bumgarner doesn't make sense for the Cubs: First and foremost, the left-hander hasn't been good in years
There was a time when Bumgarner was one of the most dominant pitchers in the game. During his time with the San Francisco Giants, the big man amassed a whopping 1,846 innings with a 3.13 ERA and four All-Star appearances. His shining moments came in the postseason though, where he helped bring three championships to the Bay Area in 2010, 2012 and 2014. The 2014 postseason was particularly impressive, where Bumgarner threw 52 October innings with a minuscule 1.03 ERA, good enough for the NLCS and World Series MVP trophies.
But that prowess seems pretty far removed at this point, as the last great season Bumgarner had was arguably 2018. And he only started 21 games that year. In fact, ever since signing his $85 million deal with Arizona, Bumgarner's has seemingly lost his former ace level stuff. His only full season was 2022, but over 30 starts the southpaw had a 4.88 ERA.
The left-hander seemed to have picked up right where he left off last year, and Arizona finally saw enough. Bumgarner is shockingly only 33-years-old, so there is still time to turn things around and have a late career renaissance. But the Cubs should realistically not be looking for a restoration project with the team playing so well.