Madison Bumgarner, the most dominant pitcher in the MLB playoffs, is from a town in North Carolina called Hickory. Located about an hour's drive northwest of Charlotte, Hickory has a population of 40,000. It is also called Bumtown, and that nickname developed a century before Bumgarner became a two-time World Series winner who is on the verge of a third with the Giants.
From Eric Adelson's 2012 column: "So many Bumgarners have lived here over the past century that the locals refer to this tiny area of rural North Carolina as Bumtown. About 100 Bumgarners still live here today."
Bumgarner, who limited the Royals to one run in seven innings in Game 1 of the World Series, lives in San Francisco now, but his mother, Debbie, said he enjoys making trips back to Bumtown during the offseason.
"When he is at home, he usually tries to do some type of event or fundraiser and helped with a benefit a few years ago when someone needed a kidney transplant," Debbie told the Hickory Daily Record in 2013. "He signed autographs and handed out pictures for the event and helped them raise money. But he's pretty quiet about it, whether he helps one person or helps an organization."
Part of Bumgarner's appeal is his easy-going style. In a 2011 interview with Marty Caswell, Bumgarner confirms the story that he once bought his wife a cow for her birthday: