San Francisco Giants left-handed starting pitcher Madison Bumgarner enjoyed a great season in 2012 proving to be a solid rock for the team in the coming years. Christmas came early for the 23-year-old back in April signing a five-year contract extension worth $35 million ending any thoughts of leaving the team in the future,
Bumgarner was dominant in the month of June going 5-0 in six starts showcasing a 2.42 ERA allowing 36 hits, 12 runs, three homers and striking out 45 as the opposition batted .220 in 44.2 innings. He smacked his first career home run on June 12 against the Houston Astros, tossed his first complete game and shutout on June 28 against the Cincinnati Reds.
He allowed just one hit and struck out eight in that start as the Giants recorded their franchise-record fourth consecutive shutout extending their scoreless innings streak to 36. Bumgarner would throw his second complete game of the year on August 14 facing the Washington Nationals surrendering five hits, one run and six strikeouts.
The lefty was unbelievable at AT&T Park going 10-3 displaying a 2.38 ERA in 15 games yielding 84 hits, 28 earned runs, five homers and 98 strikeouts with opponents batting .219 in 106 innings. He finished the regular season with a 16-11 record owning a 3.37 ERA in 32 starts allowing 183 hits, 78 earned runs, 23 homers and striking out 191 as the opposition batted .234 off him in 208.1 innings. He became the first Giants lefty since Shawn Estes in 2000 to win 15 games. Offensively, Bumgarner hammered out 11 hits, two homers and 12 RBI's proving he has the power with the bat.
Bumgarner struggled mightily in his first two postseason starts at home getting knocked around by the Reds and St. Louis Cardinals allowing 15 hits, 10 runs three homers and striking out six as the Giants lost both games. He rebounded nicely in Game 2 of the World Series pitching a beauty against the Detroit Tigers throwing seven scoreless innings as the Giants won the game. He became the second pitcher to begin a World Series career tossing 15 plus scoreless innings since Bruce Hurst did it back in 1986 with the Boston Red Sox. Bumgarner threw eight scoreless innings back in Game 4 of the 2010 World Series facing the Texas Rangers.
He finished the postseason with a 1-2 record producing a 6.00 ERA in three starts allowing 17 hits, 10 runs, three homers and striking out 14 with opponents batting .288 off him in 15 innings. The Giants finished with a 20-15 overall record including the postseason in his outings.
I look for Bumgarner to make big strides in 2013 putting together one heck of a season that could include a berth in the All-Star Game for the first time and be in contention for the National League Cy Young Award. Scary to imagine how good he will be in the next few years.
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