The San Francisco Giants defeated the Detroit Tigers 8-3 in Game 1 of the World Series Thursday night behind a three home run performance from Pablo Sandoval and consistent pitching from Barry Zito. In Game 2, Madison Bumgarner will get the ball. Bumgarner has been shaky this postseason, which begs the question: should he start Game 2 Thursday?
Giants manager Bruce Bochy chose Bumgarner over Tim Lincecum, who was used in relief of Zito. Bochy feels good about Bumgarner. He told Lyle Spencer of MLB.com:
“He’s had a great year. He’s done a great job for us since he’s been up here, including postseason. This is a small sample on a couple hiccups he had earlier, and I think he’s getting some much-needed rest and some time to work on making a couple adjustments in his delivery.”
Bumgarner has been a good pitcher since joining the Giants rotation in 2010. He has produced 36 wins, recorded a 3.20 ERA and struck out 478 batters. In 2010, Bumgarner was 2-0 in three starts during the Giants’ championship run. He has proven himself to be a good pitcher in the postseason, however, it has been the opposite in 2012.
In two starts this postseason, Bumgarner has not lasted through the fifth inning of any game. He has been historically bad, having an 11.25 ERA. Pitching coach Dave Righetti cited mechanical issues with Bumgarner that could have attributed to his poor pitching lately. Bumgarner claims that he is ready to go.
He has not started in 11 days, but has pitched in numerous bullpen sessions over the long period of time. The way it looks like right now, Bumgarner would be the best pitcher for the team in Game 2.
Follow Ryan Gaydos on Twitter.
Rant Sports has full coverage of the 2012 World Series.