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Friday, October 26, 2012
Bumgarner with a bounceback, flashback

By ESPN Stats & Information


US Presswire/Kyle TeradaMadison Bumgarner returned to past success in his Game 2 win.

The formula for the 2012 San Francisco Giants through the first two games of the World Series was the same as it was in the first two games of the 2010 World Series.

For the second time in three years, the Giants beat a former Cy Young Award winner in Game 1 (Cliff Lee in 2010, Justin Verlander in 2012), then pitched a shutout in Game 2.

Here's a closer look at how they handled the Detroit Tigers on Thursday night.

It’s a Mad, Mad, Madison World
Two years removed from a brilliant scoreless start in the World Series against the Texas Rangers, Madison Bumgarner came through with a pitching gem for the Giants.

Bumgarner joined Tom Glavine (1995 Braves) and Roger Clemens (2000 Yankees) as the only pitchers since 1950 to have a World Series line of at least seven scoreless innings, allowing two hits or fewer, with eight strikeouts.

The Elias Sports Bureau notes that Bumgarner became the fifth pitcher (and second Giants pitcher) to start his World Series career with at least 15 straight scoreless innings.

The only other Giants pitcher with that sort of streak is Christy Mathewson, whose 28-inning streak spanned from 1905 to 1911.

The two hits allowed by the Giants were the fewest they’ve allowed in any of their 107 World Series games.

It marked the second straight year that a team pitched a two-hitter in the World Series (the Texas Rangers threw one against the St. Louis Cardinals last season).

The last time a National League team held an American League team to two hits or fewer in a World Series game was in Game 6 of the 1995 World Series, when the Atlanta Braves beat the Cleveland Indians.

The Giants and Braves are the only NL teams to shut out an AL team on two hits or fewer in a World Series game in the past 41 seasons.

Bumgarner won on the strength of his slider, which he threw 34 times.

The Reds and Cardinals combined for six hits against the slider in his previous two postseason starts (both losses), but in Game 2 it netted 11 outs against just one hit and one walk.

Bumgarner set the tone for that with the first two outs of the game, when he struck out Austin Jackson looking and Omar Infante swinging with a slider.

That made him the third Giants pitcher to start a World Series game with a pair of strikeouts, joining Hall of Famers Mathewson and Carl Hubbell.

Bumgarner went to a two-strike count against 10 hitters, striking out eight of them (he walked the other two). This was the first start of his career in which an opponent failed to put a two-strike pitch from Bumgarner in play.

Tigers' bats silenced
The Tigers' two hits were their fewest in a World Series game since 1940. They’ve been shut out twice this postseason after being shut out twice in the entire regular season.

The Tigers are 4-for-19 with men on base in the first two games of this series. Prince Fielder is 0-for-4 in those situations, with a popout and lineout in Game 1, and a fly out and ground ball double play in Game 2.

Tigers hitters have had trouble hitting the fastball in this series.

They missed on 21 percent of their swings against heaters in Games 1 and 2. In their AL Championship Series sweep of the Yankees, they missed on only 14 percent of their fastball swings and hit .364 in at-bats that ended with that pitch.

They are 2-for-18 against fastballs in this series.

Quirk of the Night
This marked the first World Series game in which a go-ahead run scored on a ground ball double play in the seventh inning or later.

It marked the first with a go-ahead ground ball double play in any inning since 1981, when then-Dodgers catcher Mike Scioscia hit into one against the New York Yankees.