Madison Bumgarner, the San Francisco Giants southpaw ace, saw Los Angeles Dodgers manager Don Mattingly sit two of his best left-handed hitters Saturday, in an effort to gain any kind of advantage over the 24-year-old Bumgarner. But it was no use. The Giants starter fanned 10 and allowed just two runs in 6 1/3 innings, pitching the Giants to a 7-2 victory over their arch-rivals from Southern California and continuing the hot San Francisco start to the 2014 season.
The Giants also won the first start for Madison Bumgarner, Opening Day against the Arizona Diamondbacks. But Bumgarner struggled in that previous outing, allowing four runs in just four innings of work before coming out of the game.
Against the Dodgers, Bumgarner was intent on pitching much deeper into the contest.
“He’s a horse,” said Giants manager Bruce Bochy, who came to the mound to get Bumgarner after the lefty had thrown 114 pitches. “He’s strong. He wasn’t happy to come out of the game, but that’s Madison. He told me, ‘You’re going to let me go, right?’ He was at the point where we didn’t want to push him, but he did a great job against a tough lineup.”
Mattingly allowed only one lefty position player to hit against Madison Bumgarner, first baseman Adrian Gonazlez. Both Carl Crawford and Andre Ethier sat on the bench against the southpaw. Ethier came in to pinch hit once Bumgarner left the game, ripping an RBI single off Santiago Casillas, who relieved Bumgarner.
“I was throwing a little bit of everything,” said Madison Bumgarner after the game. “It seemed like they had a lot of baserunners today, but I felt like I made good pitches all day. The command was there and my stuff was pretty good.”
The win was the fifth in their first six games for the streaking Giants, who have jumped out to a an early lead in the National League West. The Dodgers dropped to 4-3 with the loss.
Madison Bumgarner has dominated the Dodgers on their home turf, going 4-1 with a 1.53 ERA in his last five starts in venerable Dodger Stadium.