Madison Bumgarner Nixes Opener Strategy

Bryce Harper and Giants president Farhan Zaidi

Modal Trigger Bryce Harper and Giants president Farhan Zaidi Corey Sipkin AP

Unsurprisingly, Farhan Zaidi, the San Francisco Giants president of baseball ops, fielded no shortage of Bryce Harper related questions at the club's media day at Oracle Park on Friday afternoon.

During a Q&A session at Saturday's FanFest, manager Bruce Bochy revealed that Bumgarner texted him during the Winter Meetings after learning that the Giants were considering using openers this season. The extent of their interest is not known. "What team out there wouldn't want a Bryce Harper, a Manny Machado, a lot of the free agents?"

Madison Bumgarner isn't a fan of the opener strategy.

First, the Giants have a very inexperienced outfield with Mac Williamson having the most Major League service time (120 games). Harper would fill an immediate need in right field and enhance a lineup that right now is a mix of aging veterans and rising young players.

The Giants have declined to speak too in-depth about the meeting with Harper.

What's less clear is if Harper would choose San Francisco. But that was before the San Francisco Giants threw their hat into the ring. As the calendar moves towards March it may be time for Harper and agent Scott Boros to take a different approach. However, they do plan to offer the 26-year-old a "lucrative short-term deal", which likely means it would have a higher average annual value than some of the offers other teams have made or discussed with Harper. With Harper's suitors reportedly down to four teams, it seemed like we were getting close. It also stands to reason that the Giants have the payroll flexibility to offer Harper a comparable contract. He's going to have some decisions to make.

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