For many reasons, Paxton and Bumgarner are viewed as mirrors of each other. They are both left-handers, both entering their age-30 seasons, both heading into the later years of their careers and are both doing so with durability concerns. Paxton’s 160 1/3 innings last year were a career high. Bumgarner has missed at least two and a half months in each of the last two seasons relating to separate injuries.
Alex Pavlovic of NBC Sports Bay Area suggested that San Francisco might not net as much in return as it might have once hoped to.
“The trade that went down the other day with Paxton was interesting because a lot of people think Justus Sheffield is maybe a reliever,” Pavlovic said on the Giants Insider Podcast. “And he’s a very good prospect, but the package wasn’t crazy. You kind of compare those two guys. Bumgarner has the postseason stuff. Bumgarner has all of that. He’s had health issues, but they’ve not been fluky like Paxton has had.”
Paxton was twice placed on the disabled list last year — first in July with lower back inflammation and then after being hit by a comebacker in Oakland on his pitching forearm. In ’17, Paxton hit the DL with a strained left pectoral muscle when approaching his 110-pitch count during a start in August. Bumgarner missed nearly three months in ’17 after separating his pitching shoulder in a dirt bike accident during an off-day in Colorado, and then last season was sidelined until June with a fractured fifth metacarpal after taking a comebacker during his final start in Spring Training.
“Paxton if you look that numbers the last two years, was more dominant,” Pavlovic said. “You can see why the Yankees wanted him and might have valued him higher. What they gave up, we’ve always said a great four [prospects] for Bumgarner. That’s what people would expect I think. But I would think looking at this point, I would think maybe one big prospect and then maybe a couple fillers.”