Bumgarner strikes out 11 in Giants’ 4-2 win over Rockies
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Madison Bumgarner followed up his worst start of the season with one of his best.
Bumgarner struck out 11 batters in six innings and also drove in a run with an RBI single that helped lead the San Francisco Giants to a 4-2 victory over the Colorado Rockies on Tuesday night.
Bumgarner (4-7) bounced back from a rough start against the Dodgers when he allowed six runs in 3 2-3 innings with a sharp performance in what could be an audition for a contender looking to add a proven playoff performer down the stretch. The 2014 World Series MVP is in the final year of his contract and the struggling Giants could look to deal their best asset in hopes of adding prospects to the farm system.
“He’s shown that ability so many times to come off a bad start and put it behind him and wash it off and bounce back,” manager Bruce Bochy said. “He did that tonight. What a great game he threw.”
Bumgarner said he made some minor adjustments between starts and it paid off. He retired the first 10 batters he faced with six strikeouts before allowing a solo homer to Ian Desmond.
The only other run he gave up came in the sixth inning when left fielder Alex Dickerson appeared to lose a fly ball by David Dahl in the lights, leading to an RBI double that cut San Francisco’s lead to 3-2.
“I’ve been getting caught just pitching to just one side pretty much every pitch,” he said. “These guys are too good to do that to. The plate is small enough as it is so you better use the whole thing.”
Bumgarner preserved the lead by striking out Ryan McMahon to end his first outing with double-digit strikeouts since 2017. Bumgarner allowed two runs, three hits and three walks.
Will Smith pitched the ninth for his 21st save in as many chances.
Bumgarner also got into the act with his bat when he followed a two-out, RBI single by Donovan Solano in the fourth inning against Chi Chi González (0-1) with one of his own to make it 3-1.
González, who was making his first appearance in the majors since 2016, struck out the side in order in the first inning. He allowed three runs and six hits in five innings.
“It’s a great comeback for Chi Chi from where he’s been,” manager Bud Black said. “He’ll be the first to tell you he wanted better results but when a guy comes back from Tommy John, a long haul back, then get back to the big leagues which is a goal for all players . we were all excited for him. He got off to a good start then it sort of got away from him as the game went on.”
Tyler Austin added a pinch-hit homer in the seventh for the Giants to make it 4-2.
Rockies: INF Brendan Rodgers was placed on the 10-day injured list with a right shoulder impingement after hurting his shoulder on a throw over the weekend in Los Angeles.
Giants: SS Brandon Crawford was back in the lineup after getting a day off Monday with mild hamstring tightness.
The Giants finished the game with three perfect innings from the bullpen. San Francisco’s relievers have thrown 33 straight scoreless innings in the past eight home games against the Rockies, allowing just 12 hits.
Brandon Belt started as the leadoff hitter for the Giants for just the second time in his career. He struck out on three pitches in his first at-bat but drove in the first run with a sacrifice fly in the third inning. He will stay in the leadoff spot Wednesday.
“It didn’t look too smart the first at-bat,” Bochy said. “I told him, ‘You’re supposed to make me look good, but three pitches and you sit down.’ He laughed.”
Catcher Buster Posey hosted 1,000 Junior Giants players before the game, giving each of them a ticket to the game and a free glove. Posey also took questions from the children at a ceremony held in the stands.
Jeff Samardzija (4-6), who pitched seven scoreless innings at home against the Rockies in April, gets the start in the series finale against German Márquez (7-3).