This was probably his worst outing in his career this season. Madison Bumgarner struggled to start the game and never really found his command. Twice he loaded the bases in the first and fourth innings but managed to get out of the jam.
However, he was unable to contain Rene Rivera who drove in a career-high five runs that led to the San Diego Padres 6-4 victory over the Giants. Bumgarner tossed five innings allowing five runs all from Rivera. He drove in a two-run double in the fourth before adding a three-run homer in the fifth.
“Once I was going down to first base,” Rivera said. “I saw that [Angel] Pagan was going back and back… I realized that it was gone. It’s a good feeling and its good for the team. We need this one and hopefully a lot more to come.”
In the first frame, Everth Cabrera led off the first with a single ground ball to second baseman Brandon Hicks, deflected by first baseman Brandon Belt. Carbrera was safe at first and two outs later Bumgarner walked two to load the bases but luckily he got out of the jam by striking out Alexi Amarista.
“Something felt a little off (mechanically),” Bumgarner said. “I’ll have to go back to see if I can figure it out. My command wasn’t very good and that always makes it tough to get out and give the team chances to win, when you can’t throw strikes or get it where you want it.”
“I think it’s fair to say he made a few more mistakes than we’re accustomed to,” said manager Bruce Bochy. “He left some pitches over the plate and had trouble getting the ball where he wanted. Your going to go through skids.”
The Padres opened up their offense in the fourth. Tommy Medica reached first on a fielding error by shortstop Brandon Crawford. Bumgarner then surrendered two back-to-back doubles which included Rivera’s two-run double down the left field line giving San Diego a 2-0 lead.
The Giants responded bottom of the fourth with huge hits from both Hunter Pence and Michael Morse. Angel Pagan led off the frame with a single, Pence followed with a RBI triple and Morse’s 2-run single put San Francisco up 3-2. Morse leads the team with 19 RBI’s in the month of April and had a season-high three hits tonight.
Unfortunately, the Padres would not go away quietly. Rivera’s three-run homer put San Diego back in the league in the fifth. And top of the ninth Will Venable led off the inning with a double and Amarista reached first on a fielder’s choice fielded by second baseman Brandon Hicks scoring in Venable.
Hicks blasted a solo home run in the fifth, his fourth home run this season, which is a career-high. He’s now homered in back-to-back games for the first time in his career. Yesterday Hicks won Sunday’s game with a walk-off homer. Pablo Sandoval and Belt continue to struggle offensively getting on base. Sandoval went 0-for-4, his batting average dropped to .172 and Belt got on base with just a walk.
“It’s a work in progress,” Bochy said referring to both Sandoval and Belt. “Our corner guys are going to have to get going for us to have success and put runs on the board.”