If there was one person in the world who would HATE the new “opener” strategy in Major League Baseball it would be Madison Bumgarner. This guy probably despises any kind of change in his life. He’s the most old school person that’s ever existed. There’s no way he has a phone from the last five years. Dude is still rocking a flip phone probably. Twitter or Instagram? Might as well be something from another galaxy. The phrase “Just give me the fucking ball and let me throw” should be engraved on his tombstone.
The Rays revolutionized the game of baseball last year with their opener strategy. If you’re unaware of what that is, basically they used a reliever, most of the time Sergio Romo, as their first inning pitcher (hence opener) and handed the game off to their starter in the 2nd or 3rd inning. What this did was allow the starter to avoid the top of the order initially and help make him more effective as the game moved along. The first inning is statistically the highest scoring inning of all, so the nerds led by Brian Kenny came themselves over this idea. As alien as it sounded, it worked and won the Rays a shocking 90 games. The A’s used this strategy in the Wild Card game and got skull-fucked, but the fact that it was used in that spot should speak volumes for how this is spreading.
Bumgarner said he would walk out of the ballpark if Bochy decided he was going to follow a reliever in the 2nd inning. Incredible. He doesn’t believe in pitch counts. Doesn’t believe in innings limits. Doesn’t care about days of rest in the playoffs. If he can feel his arm he thinks he’s going to beat you. And you can bet your ass he’s starting his baseball games, unless of course it’s October and he’s cleaning up your mess the day after he started.
Could you imagine telling Mad Bum there’s a 20 second pitch clock? Good luck warning him he took too long to throw the ball to home plate. Even better luck penalizing him if he did it multiple times. I feel like he’s just going to retire when that comes into full effect.