Madison Bumgarner spent the first six innings of the game being better than the Phillies. He beat them with his fastball, he beat them with his slutter, he beat them with his curveball, and he beat them with his bat. Even without the offense really coming through, his domination was reminiscent of the Warriors during the regular season this year, just clearly outclassing the other guys, who had no business being in the same game as him.
But as the game wore on, just like the Warriors, he started putting himself in holes just to see if he could get out of them. In the top of the fifth, Maikel Franco hit a leadoff double, breaking up Bumgarner's no-hitter, and went to third on a wild pitch during the next plate appearance. The next hitter, Andres Blanco, hit a fly ball to center field that was too shallow for Franco to score, even on Denard Span's arm. After that, Cameron Rupp and Jimmy Paredes grounded out to Brandon Crawford, and the run didn't score. Probably the most incredible part about it was that it didn't seem all that incredible. What, are the Phillies going to score on Madison Bumgarner? Ha ha ha. Don't be silly.
In the seventh, the Phillies half of the inning again started out with a leadoff double, this time from ex-Giant farmhand Tommy Joseph. The pitch was a 90 MPH fastball that was up, but not quite up enough. Joseph's always been able to hit a fastball, so it's perhaps not a big surprise that he hit this one:
It seemed like the same old Phillies story when Maikel Franco flew out to right field and Joseph didn't think to advance to third base, but then Andres Blanco came up and just barely snuck a grounder past Bumgarner's outstretched glove. That pitch was also not in a great place:
Finally, Cameron Rupp came to the plate. Bumgarner immediately fell behind, going 3-0 on him before coming back to make it 3-2. Unfortunately, after he did that, he threw a fastball in the middle of the strike zone.
That was it. That was the game. Despite a very strong start, in the end Bumgarner made too many mistakes and lost. Just like, oh, hey, the Warriors.
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In the bottom of the 8th, Joe Panik, on second base after a single and a wild pitch, thought that Brandon Crawford's line drive to the outfield was going to fall in, so he took off. He just started running as hard as he could, and unfortunately, the line drive did not fall in, he was doubled off second, and an inning that had started with a man on second and nobody out ended without any runs scored.
It was a tough spot for Panik, who made a mistake because he was eager to score and made a read off the bat that he would be able to if he just ran super, super hard. If you'd like to call into KNBR tonight, you can also blame Brandon Belt, who failed to move Panik over in his at bat, instead hitting a lazy fly ball to left field. It's hard to blame Crawford, who hit an absolute shot to left that just happened to find a glove. You can blame baseball for being an asshole, of course. You can always do that, because it's basically always true.
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Madison Bumgarner hitting alert: In the second inning, Jeremy Hellickson got to 2-2 against Madison Bumgarner and then didn't come close to throwing him a strike on the next two pitches. Two breaking balls, two balls, and not one that even Eric Gregg would have called a strike. Was that a bigger contributor to the first Giants run than Tommy Joseph taking his eye off Gregor Blanco's easy grounder on the next pitch? Probably not, but just like in his last home start, the opposing pitcher's fear of Bumgarner's hitting prowess helped get the Giants a run.
In his next AB, Bumgarner hit a solid single. He's a pretty good hitter.
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Madison Bumgarner run support alert: In Bumgarner's last 4 starts, the Giants have scored a total of 7 runs. They should score more runs for him, probably. Though to be fair, he hasn't homered once in that time, so really, who's to blame here?