It looks like Madison Bumgarner and Jason Heyward have just about had it with spring training.
The two stars had a run-in Thursday during a spring training game in Arizona, and the spat appeared to start over a misunderstanding.
Bumgarner struck out Heyward in the fourth inning, and as the Chicago Cubs outfielder started to walk toward the dugout, he and the San Francisco Giants ace started to get into it. The two exchanged words and were separated, though it was unclear how the disagreement started.
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Apparently it was all just one big misunderstanding, as Bumgarner thought Heyward and the Cubs were stealing signs. Heyward, however, insisted after the game he was only communicating with Cubs outfielder Dexter Fowler — who was on second base — about whether the third strike was a good pitch.
“Dexter was so discreet I was still waiting for a response,” Heyward told reporters, per ESPN.com. “He was too subtle. I was like, ‘Just give me a thumbs up on the side.’ I didn’t see it, so I was still looking and I was looking and getting ready to turn, and Buster (Posey) was like, ‘Hey, hey what we got?’ And I was like, ‘Well, this doesn’t look good, but this isn’t what you guys thought it was.”
Of course, the Giants weren’t sure whether the Cubs were stealing signs.
“(Heyward) didn’t say anything to him (Fowler),” Bumgarner told reporters, according to ESPN.com. “He just looked at him, from what I could tell. If it looked like he was upset with him, there’s only one reason he could be doing that. You might want to be a little more discreet about that if you’re going to do that kind of thing.
“I thought he was looking at me or talking to me. But he said he wasn’t. So there’s only one other person for him to be talking to — the guy standing on second base.”
Heyward also insisted the Giants are “first-class guys.”
So there you have it. One big misunderstanding. That’s bound to happen from time to time with a guy like Bumgarner involved, as the Giants ace has a habit of getting a little carried away now and then. And with spring training nearing its end and everyone ready to just start the season, it’s not surprising we nearly saw fireworks Thursday in Arizona.
Thumbnail photo via Joe Camporeale/USA TODAY Sports Images