MIKE FITZPATRICK,AP Sports Writer
Great start for Madison Bumgarner, who really struggled during the NL playoffs.
Two strikeouts to start the game and then he gets Miguel Cabrera on a grounder to shortstop with a low breaking ball.
Bumgarner got a little help on the corners and at the top of the strike zone from plate umpire Dan Iassogna. A couple of close pitches, could have gone either way. Bumgarner doesn’t appear to be throwing as hard as usual, but he hit his spots in the first inning.
Welcome back to the World Series.
Now that Justin Verlander lost, the Tigers are in trouble. That seems to be the conventional wisdom, at least.
Hardly anyone was expecting baseball’s top pitcher to turn in such a dud during Game 1 in San Francisco on Wednesday night. And most observers who picked Detroit to win this World Series were probably counting on Verlander to put his team ahead in the opener.
But don’t brush off the Tigers just yet. Doug Fister is certainly capable of coming through with a big game, and Giants starter Madison Bumgarner is a question mark in Game 2 tonight.
First pitch coming up in a few minutes.
Bumgarner won 16 games during the regular season but looked fatigued during the National League playoffs. He went 0-2 with an 11.25 ERA in two outings and was removed from the rotation during the NLCS, replaced by Tim Lincecum.
It will be interesting to see how Bumgarner responds after a little break. He worked on his delivery in the bullpen, and manager Bruce Bochy chose the young lefty over Lincecum for this start.
Tigers manager Jim Leyland says Fister is an intense competitor, and there’s plenty of pressure on him tonight. Fister, pitching on 11 days’ rest, held the Yankees scoreless for 6 1-3 innings in the ALCS opener and has a 1.35 ERA in two postseason starts.
Recent history favors the Giants, though. Sixteen of the past 17 home teams to win Game 1 went on to win the World Series.
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