CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - There's no chance pro baseball player Madison Bumgarner will ever forget his roots.
"Where you come from is the most important thing to me. How people view you and what kind of man they think you are," Bumgarner said when we sat down with him in Scottsdale, AZ, just a few days into San Francisco Giants spring training.
The World Series champs and their MVP pitcher are hoping for another big season.
"Even in these first few days of camp he is still intense about practicing and being really involved," Giants catcher Buster Posey said.
The thing about Bumgarner is he lives two very different lives.
"During the season with the travel and all of it, I guess we're kind of living the city life," he said.
During the off season he retreats with his wife and family to his ranch in Caldwell County.
"If we wanted to we could go the whole off season without seeing anyone at all," Bumgarner added.
Even after the World Series win and being named Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year, Bumgarner didn't spend much time trying to be a media darling. He carefully chose which appearances he would make and which interviews he'd do.
"We had the opportunity to make it as busy as we wanted to but at that point with the season over, being back with family was the most important thing," he said.
One thing he made sure of, during the height of World Series madness, was to keep up with all of the encouragement from friends, family, and even total strangers back here in the Carolinas.
"I'm not big into Facebook but my wife would show me all of the videos and comments people were posting. Seeing everyone from my high school and what they did in the gym...it's pretty awesome to see that stuff," he said.
In all we talked with Madison Bumgarner for about 15 minutes before he hit the field to train. You can watch our entire interview here on this page. We asked about baseball, family, his life during the regular season and the off season. You'll also want to hear his answers to whether he would drive anything other than a truck, his beer of choice, and which animals he doesn't yet have at his home in Lenoir that he'd like to have.
We have also posted a slide show of photos from our visit to San Francisco Giants Spring Training in Scottsdale, AZ.