Giants benefit from Bumgarner's rapid maturity
Game 4 starter finished season strong, delivered in NLDS
SAN FRANCISCO -- Madison Bumgarner was the chief beneficiary of the decision to leave Barry Zito off the Giants roster for the first two rounds. And now he has a chance to give his club a commanding lead in the National League Championship Series.The Game 4 start that likely would've been Zito's has come around again with the left-handed Bumgarner matching Phillies right-hander Joe Blanton in Game 4 on Wednesday evening at AT&T Park (4:30 p.m. PT on FOX). Win and the Giants will go up 3-1 in the best-of-seven series. Lose and it's 2-2 heading into Thursday night's Game 5. Bumgarner is well aware of the confidence the Giants and manager Bruce Bochy have placed in him.
- 2010 Regular Season
- Overall: 29 G, 28 GS, 9-6, 4.82 ERA, 43 BB, 134 Ks
- Overall: 18 GS, 7-6, 3.00 ERA, 26 BB, 86 Ks
- Key stat: 2.51 ERA in last five regular-season starts
- Key stat: 1.13 ERA in Sept.
- 2010: N/A
Career: 8 G, 5 GS, 2-0, 3.89 ERA
- 2010: 1 GS, 1-0, 3.00 ERA
Career: 1 GS, 1-0, 3.00 ERA
- At AT&T PARK
- 2010: N/A Career: 3 GS, 0-1, 3.57 ERA
- 2010: 8 GS, 1-3, 4.60 ERA Career: 9 GS, 1-3, 4.47 ERA
- Against this opponent
- 2010: 1 GS, 1-0, 2.84 ERA Career: 7 GS, 2-3, 4.73 ERA
- 2010: N/A Career: N/A
- Loves to face: Juan Uribe (1-for-11)
Hates to face: Freddy Sanchez (3-for-12, 3 HRs)
- Loves to face: N/A
Hates to face: N/A
- Game breakdown
- Why he'll win: Been there, done that
- Why he'll win: Competitive rookie showed no fear in NLDS
- Pitcher beware: Hasn't thrown since a one-inning outing on Oct. 3
- Pitcher beware: His 4.60 ERA at AT&T Park this season is no home-field advantage
- Bottom line: Savvy veteran
- Bottom line: Beyond his years
"I'll just try to throw strikes and get ahead of guys," he said about his game plan for Game 4. "I'm just going to go out there and try to throw quality pitches each time and see how it goes."
Barry M. Bloom is national reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Boomskie on Baseball. Follow @boomskie on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.