Madison Bumgarner took a no-hitter into the 6th inning (it’s official: people jinxing no-hitters for fun is the worst thing about Twitter, just ahead of Walmart spam and people who flirt in public instead of taking it to Direct Message). Bumgarner only struck out 2 while walking 2 over 7.1 innings, making this outing somewhat reminiscent of his 6.1 inning, 2 K, 3 BB performance against Houston on Aug. 26 (a game the Giants won 2-1).
Bumgarner showed last year that he can win while reaching double-digits in strikeouts (he did so four times last year, starting with the start immediately after the 9-hit, 0.1 inning start against the Twins), and can also get the job done with only 2 or 3 strikeouts. He also crushed a ball to centerfield that would’ve probably traveled about 40 feet over the wall last night. After Tim Lincecum amplified the concerns over his stuff after the shortest start of his career, seeing Bumgarner shut down Colorado made everyone calm.
For about 10 minutes.
First, Sergio Romo walked Dexter Fowler — his second walk in a regular season game since June 14, 2011.
Javier Lopez got out of the 8th on a Carlos Gonzalez grounder to Emmanuel Burriss, and a few minutes later Brian Wilson came in for his first save opportunity of the year. It was not exactly a confidence-building exercise.
— 32 pitches. 32 laborious, painful pitches.
— Miles per hour for each pitch, according to the radar gun readings CSN displayed: 87, 89, 88, 89, 81 (double), 87, 91, 87, 88 (infield single), 89, 88, 89, 93, 94 (strikeout), 87, 93, 88 (single), 88, 89, 93, 89 (lineout), 88, 83 (injury timeout danger danger oh my God take him out what is Bochy doing gaughhhrrrghghrrr), 89, 85, 89, 86, 86, 85, 89, 90, 85 (flyout).
— The worst part: the pitches that went 93 and 94 mph looked like they took FAR too much effort. Like he was trying to throw 101 mph and break up scar tissue in his elbow at the same time.
— The injury timeout could’ve been about anything. After the game, Brandon Crawford said Wilson tweaked his ankle. Wilson called the left ankle a “non-factor” and that “the story today is Bumgarner.” I watched the pitch that led to trainer Dave Groeschner running out to the mound several times, and I couldn’t see how his ankle would’ve been hurt at all. Stay tuned.
Back to the template
— The Giants had their second error-free game of the season. The Giants have committed 3 errors more times than they’ve had 0.
— At the end of the game, the dead-armed closer was pitching on a bad ankle, and the guy he was throwing to had shingles. Along with comments made publicly and privately about Nate Schierholtz’s propensity for getting nicked up, it’s clear that the Giants’ culture in regards to health is: shut the hell up unless you’re dying.
— Don’t look now, but Brandon Crawford has 4 extra-base hits. He’s officially out of the “position players we’re concerned about doghouse,” at least for now.
— No Brandon Belt today, because the Giants were probably afraid Jamie Moyer would use his veteran stylings to put Belt to sleep at the plate. Not in the sense of a magician dangling a clock from a chain, but actually euthanizing the baby giraffe. That’s the definition of “crafty.”
— Melky Cabrera’s been the best hitter since the Giants’ position players arrived in Scottsdale, and that shows no signs of abating through six games. Within a couple months you’re going to see hundreds of guys throughout the city with horribly trimmed Melky beards. Book it.
— Marco Scutaro had the peskiest 0-for-5 ever. Pretty sure he saw at least 80 pitches. Especially after watching Ryan Theriot for a week, I’m beginning to think all the people who screamed when the Rockies traded a pretty mediocre right-handed reliever for Scutaro were right — the Giants sure could’ve used him.
— Immediately after the game ended, it started raining like crazy in San Francisco (at least in the Alamo Square/NOPA area). It stopped after about 10 minutes, like a storm in Denver would, but the real rain’s supposed to hit early tomorrow morning and last through the afternoon.
— After pure insanity over a series that was as odd on the field as it was on the schedule with the off-day on Tuesday, this game was the antithesis of a Barry Zito shutout followed by Lincecum getting rocked. There was some timely hitting, but not too much. The pitchers got out of jams, the defense was of Major League quality, the end of the game was nerve-wracking and until the last out everyone watching this game figured this would be another Coors Field punch to the solar plexus.
— Now the Giants can finally put that opening series sweep in Arizona behind them, and look forward to tomorrow’s pomp, circumstance, standing ovations, 1962 legends, bunting, lightning, thunder and rain.