Giants' latest title fueled by proven bunch

Bumgarner's heroics clinch championship set up by roster's perfect blend

Giants' latest title fueled by proven bunch

SAN FRANCISCO -- Many observers have maintained that Madison Bumgarner won the 2014 World Series for the Giants single-handedly. After all, he won Games 1 and 5 before saving Game 7 with five stunning scoreless innings of relief that capped a remarkable postseason.

But other Giants also had a hand in the club's excellence.

More

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Ishikawa's life changed since walk-off, but he hasn't

Ishikawa's life changed since walk-off, but he hasn't

SAN JOSE -- Scant hours after hitting one of the most monumental home runs in Giants history, Travis Ishikawa noticed how life had changed.

Seeking a well-deserved late-night snack after his walk-off, three-run drive off St. Louis' Michael Wacha had lifted the Giants to a 6-3 victory in the Game 5 National League Championship Series clincher on Oct. 16, Ishikawa and his wife, Rochelle, pulled into a burger joint. Though the Ishikawas opted to enter the restaurant, a patron in the drive-through lane peered beyond the window and noticed the Giants hero standing in line. Suddenly wanting more than just a double cheeseburger, the driver pulled over as soon as he received his order and rushed into the dining area to have his picture taken with Ishikawa.

More

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Lone Star: Pence giving back to Houston kids

Popular outfielder draws crowds, support with All-Star Camp

Lone Star: Pence giving back to Houston kids

HOUSTON -- If there is somewhere in this country where Hunter Pence can blend in with the crowd, largely unnoticed, it's probably the place that he still considers home base, even as numerous professional and personal obligations pull him in a dozen different directions.

But let's not kid ourselves. Even in Houston, where it all began, Pence can only blend in so much. He stands out, no matter where he is, for a couple of reasons. One, obviously, he's a Major League star who has won two World Series titles in the past three years with the San Francisco Giants.

More

Alyson Footer is a national correspondent for MLB.com. Follow her on Twitter @alysonfooter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Peavy thrilled to stay with Giants on 2-year deal

Veteran right-hander finalizes $24 million contract; 're-energized' for another title run

Peavy thrilled to stay with Giants on 2-year deal

SAN FRANCISCO -- Jake Peavy remembered the generosity that the Giants expressed toward him and his family when they acquired him. So he seized the opportunity to reciprocate the club's goodwill.

As Peavy's two-year, $24 million deal with the Giants was formalized Tuesday, the right-hander indicated on a conference call that the club's consideration for him and his family influenced him when he received offers in free agency that were more lucrative or would have enabled him to play closer to his home in Alabama.

More

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

For Hudsons, Christmas spirit a year-round endeavor

Giants pitcher and family dedicate time to foundation, helping the needy

For Hudsons, Christmas spirit a year-round endeavor

SAN FRANCISCO -- Tim Hudson is the Major Leagues' winningest active pitcher, yet his most treasured victories occur far from any diamond.

Hudson and his wife, Kim, launched the Hudson Family Foundation in 2009 with one goal in mind: helping children and their families. The foundation aims to support youths throughout Alabama and Georgia who require help in addressing "a specific physical, emotional or financial circumstance," in the words of the organization's mission statement. Since its inception, the foundation has raised more than $600,000 for the needy.

More

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hunter Pence's offseason hair is the best present

|
Hunter Pence's offseason hair is the best present

The above video is important for two reasons. First, it features Hunter Pence discussing a worthwhile cause: the Hunter Pence Baseball Academy for young athletes, which he operates with his brother Howie and their friend Sean Danielson, and which is probably a bit more effective than Hunter's Hitters. Second, it features Hunter Pence's offseason hair.

Continue Reading on Cut4

Romo signs 2-year contract to stay with Giants

A member of three recent championship squads, former closer returning on $15 million deal

Romo signs 2-year contract to stay with Giants

SAN FRANCISCO -- For Sergio Romo, security didn't come in the form of a contract. He preferred the less tangible yet equally real security of having a true baseball home and familiar teammates. That's largely why Romo, 31, spurned apparently better offers in free agency to stay with the Giants on a two-year, $15 million deal.

Including the Minors, Romo has spent 10 years in the Giants' organization since they selected him in the 28th round of the 2005 First-Year Player Draft. Speaking in a conference call Monday, he confirmed that he received multiple three-year offers from other teams and hinted that at least a couple of them said they would let him compete for the closer's role. Romo lost that prized spot last year to Santiago Casilla.

More

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Scutaro has back surgery, out 4-6 months

Veteran infielder's future with Giants in question

Scutaro has back surgery, out 4-6 months

SAN FRANCISCO -- Marco Scutaro's future with the Giants appeared questionable, at least, after general manager Brian Sabean announced Monday that the second baseman recently underwent back surgery in Miami.

Scutaro's surgeon, Dr. Michael Wang, is expected to release Scutaro, 39, from the hospital on Tuesday. Scutaro will require at least four to six months of recovery time. At that juncture, Sabean said the club's medical staff will determine whether Scutaro can play again.

More

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

McGehee happy to wind up in San Francisco

Giants like how their new third baseman fits into lineup

McGehee happy to wind up in San Francisco

For a few minutes on Friday, Casey McGehee was excited about the news of a trade between the Yankees and Marlins. He heard from his wife, Sarah, that David Phelps, a teammate in 2012, was coming to Miami. So McGehee asked his wife to look into who else was involved.

McGehee quickly learned that the Marlins had also acquired Martin Prado, no doubt his replacement at third base. That set off some alarm bells, as McGehee put it on Saturday. He called his agent and reached out to Miami president Michael Hill, who informed McGehee he wouldn't be reporting to Marlins camp next spring.

More

Adam Berry is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @adamdberry. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Phil Rogers

Cain resurgence could be difference-maker in '15

Righty's return to All-Star form would be major boost for Giants' rotation

Cain resurgence could be difference-maker in '15

It's been a surprising, slow-to-develop Hot Stove season for the Giants. But all could be forgotten in a hurry next spring if Matt Cain returns strong to join Madison Bumgarner in one of baseball's best 1-2 combinations

The Giants didn't bring back the one free agent everyone thought they would, Pablo Sandoval, and kept a couple that seemed likely to head elsewhere in Jake Peavy and big-ticket setup man Sergio Romo. They lost third-base coach Tim Flannery to retirement. And they saw their top free-agent target, Jon Lester, say "no thanks" to go in search of the Holy Grail with the Cubs.

More

Phil Rogers is a columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Active of late, Giants pondering next offseason move

World champs fill third-base void with McGehee, have engaged in talks with Shields

Active of late, Giants pondering next offseason move

After sitting back and watching other teams swoop in on their free-agent targets earlier this offseason, the Giants have moved decisively in recent days. They answered their third-base question with Casey McGehee and will soon formally announce that they've re-signed starter Jake Peavy and reliever Sergio Romo.

So, what's next for San Francisco?

More

Adam Berry is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @adamdberry. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Giants acquire McGehee to fill third-base spot

Giants acquire McGehee to fill third-base spot

SAN FRANCISCO -- The Giants filled their third-base vacancy on Friday night, announcing they obtained Casey McGehee from the Marlins for a pair of Minor League right-handers.

McGehee, 32, earned National League Comeback Player of the Year honors this season. But he became expendable when the Marlins acquired infielder Martin Prado from the Yankees in a five-player deal.

More

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hometown shows pride for Panik after quick ascension

Suburban New York community takes joy in success of Giants infielder

Hometown shows pride for Panik after quick ascension

HOPEWELL JUNCTION, N.Y. -- Along Route 82, right before the light at Unity Street, stood a small red sign that told this story -- one of a tiny New York community bursting with pride at the accomplishments of one of its own -- with four words: "Honk for Joe Panik."

Here in Hopewell, a village of sorts within the town of East Fishkill, passers-by obliged. They honked for Joe Panik, Giants second baseman. They honked for Joe Panik, World Series champion. They honked for Joe Panik, their former teammate and student and neighbor and friend.

More

Tim Healey is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bochy looking forward to healthy Belt, Pagan

Giants will be cautious with workhorse Bumgarner; Lincecum in rotation

Bochy looking forward to healthy Belt, Pagan

SAN DIEGO -- Madison Bumgarner's priceless left arm, Angel Pagan's health and the tentative state of the batting order were among key topics for 2015 that Giants manager Bruce Bochy addressed Wednesday during his question-and-answer session with reporters at baseball's Winter Meetings.

A major priority for Bochy and his staff will be the care and feeding of Bumgarner, whose 270-inning workload in 2014 prompted worries of physical erosion for 2015.

More

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Okert named to Fall League's Top Prospects Team

Most Valuable Player Greg Bird leads young stars following AFL season

Okert named to Fall League's Top Prospects Team

The Arizona Fall League on Wednesday announced its 2014 Top Prospects Team, highlighted by league Most Valuable Player Greg Bird and baseball's top prospect Byron Buxton.

The 22-man Top Prospects Team includes at least one player from 16 Major League organizations. The Fall League managers and coaches voted on the team, taking into consideration the players' performances during the fall and their projected future in the Major Leagues.

More

Teddy Cahill is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @tedcahill. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Zito set on comeback, will audition in January

|
Zito set on comeback, will audition in January

You've probably seen Moneyball 17 times by now, so you're surely aware that in 2002, Barry Zito went 23-5 with a 2.75 ERA over 35 starts for the first-place Athletics. He was 24.

Continue Reading on Cut4

'We did not receive a rose': Giants miss on Lester

'We did not receive a rose': Giants miss on Lester

SAN DIEGO -- The Giants almost certainly will leave baseball's Winter Meetings on Thursday with no new ballplayers and a handful of options for replenishing their roster.

Jon Lester, the highly coveted left-hander, became the latest free agent to turn down the Giants' contract proposals. Following the example of Pablo Sandoval and Yasmany Tomas, Lester telephoned the Giants shortly after 5:30 p.m. PT on Tuesday to inform them they no longer were in the running for his services.

More

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MadBum's delivery in top form at Sportsman of Year event

Giants ace stays humble, jokes with LA's Magic at star-studded festivity

MadBum's delivery in top form at Sportsman of Year event

NEW YORK -- Madison Bumgarner just finished a big night in style again.

Concluding a charming and humble acceptance speech after Major League Baseball Commissioner-elect Rob Manfred presented him the 2014 Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year Award, the Giants' left-hander and reigning World Series MVP looked at his wife, Ali, who traveled with him to the Chelsea Piers event from their home in Caldwell County in North Carolina's foothills.

More

Mark Newman is enterprise editor of MLB.com. Read and join other baseball fans on his MLB.com community blog. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Lyle Spencer

Resilient Giants will move on after Lester

World Series champions have history of bouncing back

Resilient Giants will move on after Lester

SAN DIEGO -- The Giants are being asked once again to rebound, something they've done over the past five seasons on the historic level of Wilt Chamberlain and Bill Russell.

It was Jon Lester or bust at the Winter Meetings for the 2014 World Series champions, and the free-agent lefty busted them with a phone call late Tuesday afternoon. Informed by Lester personally that they'd been dropped from the bidding for his services, the Giants' decision-makers were prepared to go to work immediately on Plan B for giving Madison Bumgarner a high-caliber partner in the rotation. 

More

Lyle Spencer is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bumgarner wears suit and tie for first time

|
Bumgarner wears suit and tie for first time

Madison Bumgarner is a big country music fan, so it's not incredibly shocking that he can't relate to Justin Timberlake's hit single "Suit & Tie", but this is a bit ridiculous.

According to Tom Verducci's profile on Bumgarner, the reigning World Series MVP had to buy his first suit so that he could dress appropriately to accept his award as Sports Illustrated's Sportsman of the Year.

Continue Reading on Cut4

MadBum decisive choice as SI Sportsman of the Year

Giants lefty 14th to represent MLB with magazine's prestigious award

MadBum decisive choice as SI Sportsman of the Year

SAN DIEGO -- Madison Bumgarner's sense of humor seemed intact Monday. More importantly, so did his throwing arm.

During a conference call to herald Bumgarner's selection as Sports Illustrated magazine's Sportsman of the Year, the Giants' ace left-hander said that he was "right on course" for his usual offseason, having resumed his workout routine about a week ago. He plans to begin throwing soon.

More

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hayes named Giants' first-base coach; Kelly to third

Hayes named Giants' first-base coach; Kelly to third

SAN DIEGO -- The Giants shuffled their coaching staff Monday night, naming Roberto Kelly their third-base coach to replace the retired Tim Flannery. Also, bullpen catcher Bill Hayes received Kelly's vacated role as first-base coach.

Kelly, 50, coached first base for the previous seven seasons with San Francisco. He also has helped tutor players in baserunning and was responsible for coaching outfield defense. Kelly, a two-time All-Star outfielder, batted .290 in a 14-year Major League career with eight teams.

More

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Posey a 'franchise catcher,' won't move to third

Posey a 'franchise catcher,' won't move to third

SAN DIEGO -- No matter how often Giants officials insist that Buster Posey won't move to an infield corner spot, they're asked to repeat that it won't happen, at least in the immediate future. Monday gave general manager Brian Sabean another opportunity to debunk thoughts of Posey switching from behind the plate to third base, since the Giants have an opening at the latter position.

"Buster's a catcher," Sabean said. "He's a franchise player, a franchise catcher."

More

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

See the 15 MLB SI Sportsmen of the Year covers

|
See the 15 MLB SI Sportsmen of the Year covers

From 1954 to 2013, Sports Illustrated's Sportsman of the Year was awarded to 15 professional baseball players and one entire team, the 2004 Red Sox -- a feat that spanned 14 SI covers (Mark McGwire & Sammy Sosa and Randy Johnson & Curt Schilling were co-Sportsmen in 1998 and 2001, respectively). In 2014, 60 years after the award was first given out, Madison Bumgarner brings MLB's total to 15.

With roughly a quarter of all Sportsman of the Year awards -- which, fun fact, are urns -- in the hands of MLB greats, and in celebration of Bumgarner's addition to this hallowed list, let's take a moment to look back on all the previous Sports Illustrated covers honoring MLB players. Don't mind us if we get a little misty-eyed from nostalgia:

Continue Reading on Cut4

Giants add to trophy case with four GIBBYS

Bumgarner, Ishikawa, Panik, Bochy earn awards

Giants add to trophy case with four GIBBYS

SAN FRANCISCO -- Four Giants captured prestigious MLB.com Greatness in Baseball Yearly (GIBBY) Awards, reflecting the quality and excitement of the events that brought San Francisco its third World Series title in five seasons.

Giants recipients were left-hander Madison Bumgarner, Postseason Most Valuable Player; first baseman/left fielder Travis Ishikawa, postseason walk-off; second baseman Joe Panik, best postseason play; and Bruce Bochy, Manager of the Year.

More

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

NLCS hero Ishikawa, Sanchez avoid arbitration

First baseman/outfielder gets $1.1 million; backup catcher agrees to $800,000 deal

NLCS hero Ishikawa, Sanchez avoid arbitration

SAN FRANCISCO -- Travis Ishikawa probably won't have to be a vagabond next season.

Ishikawa, the first baseman/left fielder who emerged as one of the Giants' postseason heroes, agreed to terms Thursday on a one-year, $1.1 million contract. His agent, Jim McDowell, delivered the news in an e-mail to MLB.com.

More

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Prep shortstop Rodgers leads 2015 Draft class

Duke's Matuella, 2014 top pick Aiken follow Florida high school infielder on Top 50 list

Prep shortstop Rodgers leads 2015 Draft class

For the second time in their history, the Arizona Diamondbacks own the top pick in the First-Year Player Draft. The first time that happened, in 2005, they took a high school shortstop with a potent bat.

Ten years after grabbing Justin Upton, the D-backs could follow a similar path. Lake Mary (Fla.) High School shortstop Brendan Rodgers sits atop MLBPipeline.com's initial Draft Top 50 rankings, thanks to his three plus tools (bat, power, arm) complemented by two solid ones (speed, defense). Unlike Upton, who immediately moved to the outfield as a professional, Rodgers should remain at shortstop.

More

Jim Callis is a reporter for MLB.com and writes a blog, Callis' Corner. Follow @jimcallisMLB on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Giants tender contracts to all arbitration-eligible players

Giants tender contracts to all arbitration-eligible players

SAN FRANCISCO -- The Giants tendered 2015 contracts to their six players eligible for salary arbitration, a group that consists of first baseman Brandon Belt, outfielder Gregor Blanco, shortstop Brandon Crawford, first baseman/left fielder Travis Ishikawa, right-hander Yusmeiro Petit and catcher Hector Sanchez.

None of this contingent is expected to strain the payroll budget of the reigning World Series champions, though arbitration typically guarantees pay increases that range from significant to exorbitant.

More

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.