Just like we all drew it up in March.
I was, like, *this* close to dropping 1,000 words of speculative non-fiction on the Giants' rotation plans before I realized that an announcement was coming soon.
It's Barry Zito in Game 1 against Justin Verlander, which we all kind of figured based on how the rotation was lining up. The big surprise is Madison Bumgarner going in Game 2. It shouldn't be a surprise because for nine of the last 12 months, Bumgarner has been an excellent pitcher. The problem is that two of those months were September and October of 2012, which is kind of a problem.
But here's the hope:
Bumgarner said mechanics issue at end of season left him feeling tired. Says he has found problem, feels better than he did in NLDS/NLCS.— Alex Pavlovic (@AlexPavlovic) October 23, 2012
Remember in late 2009 and early 2010, when Bumgarner's velocity was down, and everyone assumed he was hurt because he was a young pitcher? He wasn't hurt. His mechanics were wonky. He found the problem, and the Giants won the World Series.
If we want to paint with broad strokes, that is.
The choice was Bumgarner or Tim Lincecum, and I'll defer to Dave Righetti and the Giants on this. I'll trust them to know what's fixed or what's broken when it comes to Bumgarner after a few side sessions. The best-case scenario is a rejuvenated Lincecum with perfect mechanics; the likelier scenario is Bumgarner getting back to his pre-September dominance.
It's a risk, but, shucks, this all is. I don't know. Everything's worked out so far, so I'm kind of out of opinions. Besides, the way this rotation is flopping around to series wins, they'll all be this way in a few months. I say, lay back and enjoy it! It's a hell of a toboggan ride.