There was no late rally from the Cardinals this time, as the Giants were able to secure a shutout victory in the opening match of the NLCS on Saturday night. Madison Bumgarner continued his run of post-season dominance, firing 7 2/3 scoreless innings, allowing only four hits and a walk while striking out seven. Sergio Romo and Santiago Casilla got the final four outs with ease to seal the deal.
The Giants got to Cardinals starter Adam Wainwright early, scoring twice in the second inning and once more in the third inning. Wainwright, for the second time in two post-season starts this year, could not escape the fifth inning. In 4 2/3 innings, Wainwright allowed three runs (two earned) on six hits and three walks while striking out two. It will be interesting to hear if Wainwright’s elbow bothered him any, as he threw a very small percentage of fastballs (24 of 98 pitches, per Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports).
Bumgarner got into trouble only once, when the Cardinals put two base runners on with one out and moved both into scoring position with two outs. The lefty appeared to balk during an at-bat against pinch-hitter Tony Cruz, but there was no call and he was able to retire Cruz on strikes to end the threat.
Pablo Sandoval had an excellent night at the plate, finishing 3-for-4 with a double and a walk. Bumgarner set and extended a major league record, as he is now up to 26 2/3 scoreless innings on the road in the post-season, dating back to 2010.
Game 2 continues on Sunday night as Giants right-hander Jake Peavy will oppose Cardinals right-hander Lance Lynn.