Madison Bumgarner
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The Giants are not making any “outgoing calls” on Madison Bumgarner

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Contrary to a recent report from MLB.com’s Jon Morosi, Giants GM Farhan Zaidi said Friday that the team has not made any “outgoing calls” on left-hander Madison Bumgarner. Bumgarner was most recently linked to the Brewers, whom Morosi described as the Giants’ most likely trade partners this offseason, but it appears that any momentum toward a deal has all but died out.

Bumgarner, 29, rounded out a full decade in San Francisco following his 2018 campaign, and pitched to a 6-7 record with a 3.26 ERA, 3.0 BB/9, 7.6 SO/9, and 1.4 fWAR through 129 2/3 innings. Granted, he’s hardly the 5.0+ fWAR All-Star and championship leader he used to be in the mid-2010s, but his productivity has been partially zapped by a devastating shoulder sprain in 2017 and hand surgery in 2018. When healthy, he was one of the Giants’ top starters last season, during a year when their rotation finished 21st among all major league squads. He’ll earn $12 million in his final run with San Francisco and is currently positioned to enter free agency in 2020 — provided the team can’t find a trade partner before then.

While the Giants may not be actively shopping their ace, they’re not necessarily closed off to offers. Zaidi pointed out that the club envisions Bumgarner as a “central cog” as they look to become competitive in the NL West this season, but also admitted that they’re not exactly in a position to refuse to listen to incoming offers, either. Such is the nature of the offseason.

The Cubs are considering a sportsbook at Wrigley Field

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With the nationwide ban on sports gambling gone — and with sports gambling regulations slowly being implemented on a state-by-state basis — any number of businesses are considering getting in on the action. Among those businesses are the Chicago Cubs.

ESPN reports that the club is considering opening gambling facilities in and around Wrigley Field which might include betting windows, automated kiosks or, possibly, a full, casino-style sportsbook. They’re characterized as preliminary discussions as the team awaits the Illinois governor’s signature on recently-passed legislation allowing gambling. The Cubs aren’t commenting, but a source tells ESPN that nothing has been done yet. It’s just talk at the moment.

If the Cubs move forward from the talking stage it will cost them a pretty penny: a four-year license will, under Illinois’ new law, cost them $10 million.

Now: let’s see the White Sox take some action this year. I can think of nothing more fun than sports gambling at what was once Comiskey Park on the 100th anniversary of the Black Sox scandal.