SAN DIEGO — Madison Bumgarner continues to claim after starts that his mechanics aren’t locked in. His work on the field tells a different story.
Bumgarner struck out 11 and needed just 108 pitches for his 11th career complete game. Brandon Crawford took care of the offense, driving in all the runs in a 5-1 win that extended the Giants’ winning streak to six games.
Early on, Bumgarner had a “something special might happen tonight” look on the mound. Denard Span’s spectacular catch in center helped Bumgarner have a six-pitch first inning, and he struck out the side in the second. Jose Pirela hit a leadoff double in the third, but Bumgarner retired the next nine, getting four outs on strikeouts.
One of them, a whiff of Wil Myers, came with drama. Bumgarner stared Myers down after the strikeout that ended the third, and Myers looked back with a confused look on his face and asked, “What the (bleep) are you looking at man? Come on.” That emptied the benches, with Jake Peavy and Roberto Kelly flying in to make sure Bumgarner didn’t escalate things.
Cooler heads prevailed, and the Giants kept cruising. They led 3-0 at the time on Crawford’s three-run blast, and Crawford hit a sacrifice fly to tack on another run in the top of the sixth. His double in the eighth made it 5-0.
Myers got a measure of revenge with a double that put two in scoring position in the sixth, but Bumgarner struck out Derek Norris and Brandon Belt went far into foul territory to catch a pop-up for the third out. He worked around an error in the seventh and a double in the eighth, getting out of that inning on his 97th pitch.
Matt Kemp kept Bumgarner from his sixth career shutout with a mammoth homer in the ninth that hit the third deck of the Western Metal Supply Co. building.
Starting pitching report: Bumgarner walked off the mound with a 2.45 ERA. His best as a big leaguer is 2.77.
Bullpen report: They got the night off, except for a jog to the plate when the benches cleared.
At the plate: Crawford got the green light 3-0 and hit a 402-foot bomb through the thick air. The homer was his fifth of the year. He had his third career five-RBI game.
In the field: Span got a great jump and went a long way to rob Myers of a leadoff double in the first. Advanced metrics have him about league average defensively, but that’s still a huge upgrade over last season for the Giants.
Attendance: The Padres announced a crowd of 24,433 human beings. Bumgarner was booed in his first at-bat post-dustup.
Up next: Johnny Cueto makes his Giants debut at AT&T Park South. He’ll face lefty Drew Pomeranz (4-3, 1.80 ERA), who is off to a terrific start.