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Wait — there's a debate about who the Giants' fourth starter will be in the NLCS?

Oct 12, 2010, 8:25 AM EDT

Just because there are, technically speaking, two possible answers to a question doesn't mean that it's a "terrific question."

So I’m reading Andrew Baggarly’s game story in the Mercury
and I come across this passage:

Will the Giants keep Bumgarner as their No. 4 starter against the Phillies, or turn to Barry Zito? That’s a terrific question.

In that same vein:

  • Will children continue to eat delicious chocolate cake at birthday parties, or will they turn to leek soup? That’s a terrific question.
  • Will young lovers’ romantic nights on the town continue to end in passionate love making, or will they turn to coming home to do laundry and balance the checkbook? That’s a terrific question.
  • Will Craig continue to watch “It’s a Wonderful Life” every Christmas Eve while enjoying a cocktail and reflecting on the past year of his life, or will he instead watch the entire run of “According to Jim” episodes on DVD while repeatedly hitting himself in the stones with a rubber mallet? That’s a terrific question.

In September and October — when the Giants were in a playoff race, mind you — Madison Bumgarner started five games. In those games he pitched 32 innings. In those innings he struck out 32 men, walked only four and posted an ERA of 1.13.  Last night, in a clinching playoff game, on the road, he threw six effective innings.

In contrast, Barry Zito started six games, and lasted only 29 innings in September and October. He struck out 28 men during that period and walked 18 with an ERA of 4.66. If you throw in his seventh start that number goes up to 6.06. In his last start of the season — a game which could have clinched the NL West — he twice walked men with the bases loaded and left to a chorus of boos. For his efforts, he was left of the Division Series roster.

If there’s anyone out there who thinks “will Bumgarner or Zito start Game 4” is a “terrific question,” I’d truly like to meet them. I’d like to ask them about the world they live in and whether it’s anything like our own.

  1. Megary - Oct 12, 2010 at 8:34 AM

    I’d go leek soup, love making and It’s A Wonderful Life…though Courtney Thorne Smith makes this last decision more difficult than it should be.
    And no way Zito gets a game 4 start. He’s the long man in the unlikely event SF needs one.

  2. Chris Fiorentino - Oct 12, 2010 at 8:38 AM

    I always find that it is too early to call the game 4 starter before Game 3 is over. Does anyone actually think the Giants would have let Lincecum sit around for game 4 if the Giants were down 2-1? I don’t think they would have done that with the season on the line no matter what they say now. Same with the Yankers in the ALCS. I would be shocked if they go to Burnett for game 4 if they are down 2-1 in the series. If the Yankers are down 2-1, I would think they would go to CC for game 4, then if they are afraid to use Andy on short rest, they would go to Burnett for game 5, then Andy game 6 and CC game 7 if it got that far. But if they are up 2-1 or 3-0, they have no reason to pitch CC on short rest. Why bother naming starters until Game 3 is over? Makes no sense.

  3. Lrd_ Chestrfield - Oct 12, 2010 at 8:41 AM

    Bring us Zito! We want Zito!

  4. Lrd_ Chestrfield - Oct 12, 2010 at 8:46 AM

    I actually think the Giants would be better off starting Sanchez in game two who the Phillies can’t hit over Cain who they can hit.

  5. Simon DelMonte - Oct 12, 2010 at 8:56 AM

    I thought it was going to be AJ Burnett.

  6. BC - Oct 12, 2010 at 9:57 AM

    I’d rather call up Randy Johnson and see if he’s available than pitch Zito. If Zito’s on the roster, he’s only pitching if one of their starters goes sdgusfdlidzdfght and they’re down 6-0 after an inning.

  7. DGL - Oct 12, 2010 at 9:59 AM

    But, but, but Zito’s a Proven Veteran with Postseason Experience(TM)!

  8. Cheap Seat Chronicles - Oct 12, 2010 at 10:40 AM

    Wait…wait…wait…I think there’s a very, VERY important fact we’re overlooking here…
    …”According to Jim” really got put out on DVD and I still can’t find a full-run of “Mad About You” anywhere?! What the shit is that all about?!

  9. scatterbrian - Oct 12, 2010 at 12:07 PM

    Don’t overlook Donna Reed…

  10. scatterbrian - Oct 12, 2010 at 12:10 PM

    Dude, Google “Mad About You dvd”

  11. gunnymac - Oct 12, 2010 at 7:39 PM

    Craig, I will gladly supply the DVD and the rubber mallet, along as you let me sit there watching you and laughing my ass off.

  12. gunnymac - Oct 12, 2010 at 7:41 PM

    Craig, I will gladly supply the DVD and rubber mallet, as long as you let me sit there watching you and laughing my ass off.

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