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Madison Bumgarner “almost surely will start Game 4″

Oct 15, 2010, 1:31 PM EST

Madison Bumgarner

Bruce Bochy hasn’t announced anything official about his Game 4 starter choice, leaving room to change his mind depending on how the Giants fare through three games, but Chris Haft of MLB.com writes that rookie Madison Bumgarner “almost surely will start Game 4.”

Turning to Tim Lincecum on short rest is the other option for Bochy, but Haft seems certain that won’t happen regardless of how the reigning back-to-back Cy Young winner fares in the series opener tomorrow night. Bochy has said only that he’s “penciled” in Bumgarner for the start but may still “call an audible.”

Bumgarner looked terrible while competing for a rotation spot during spring training and then continued to struggle after beginning the season in the minors, but eventually rediscovered the velocity and raw stuff that made him one of baseball’s best pitching prospects coming into the season and posted a 3.00 ERA in 18 starts after joining the Giants in late June.

He had a 1.18 ERA and 34/7 K/BB ratio in his final six regular season starts and tossed six innings of two-run ball in a win over the Braves in Game 4 of the NLDS, so the 21-year-old southpaw is definitely up for the challenge. He’ll likely be matched up against Joe Blanton, although manager Charlie Manuel also left open the possibility that he could turn to Roy Halladay on short rest if the Phillies are trailing in the series.

  1. BC - Oct 15, 2010 at 1:40 PM

    If he’s down 2-1 or 3-0 going into Game 4, he’ll start Lincecum.

    • Chris Fiorentino - Oct 15, 2010 at 1:49 PM

      Agreed. That’s why all this talk about who the game 4 starter will be is just stupid. Yankers won’t be starting Burnett down 2-1 or 3-0. Phillies won’t be starting Blanton down 2-1 or 3-0. The Rangers are the only team with a set rotation, although they will be tempted to start Lee in Game 6 if they are down 3-2…but Lee doesn’t want the ball on short rest. He’s never done it. You got to WANT it to get it on short rest.

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