Here is the opening to my Friday column about the Giants and their problematic starting rotation:


Here’s the news part of this column. Matt Cain will start Game1 at AT&T Park on Saturday against the Cincinnati Reds. That already was known.

Before Thursday’s workout, Giants manager Bruce Bochy told media that Madison Bumgarner will start Game2 on Sunday.

“That’s where we’re going to leave it at right now,” Bochy said. “We’ll announce the rest of the rotation a little later.”

My antennae started twitching at that point. I mean, he wouldn’t say who will pitch in Cincinnati.

“Do you mind if I point something out?” I said.

“Sure,” Bochy said.

“I like to compare and contrast. Two years ago, we pretty much knew what your rotation was at this point. So what’s different?”

To read the full column, please click here.

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  1. lameduck

    If the Giants go up 2-0 it won’t matter and Cain will be there if it gets dicey in Ohio.

    October 5th, 2012 2:29 am

  2. Stan

    THAT’S why I said Zito after Cain. If Cain does as he should-win,that makes Zito’s start a better chance. Bumgarner hasn’t been anything good on the road this year-and I’m surprised nobody has said that- and Zito has won..home,road. Wins.

    October 5th, 2012 9:27 am

  3. Steve

    Amazingly, I said the same thing as Stan. I understand Bochy going with his two best starters and Bumgarner has been better at home this year, but I still like Zito at home rather than Cincinnati’s bandbox. Of course, Bochy knows a lot more than me. I would relegate Lincecum to the bullpen. Why reward this suddenly petulant underperformer and be forced to change and weaken the entire lineup because he doesn’t want to pitch to Posey? Grab some pine, Meat.

    October 5th, 2012 10:15 am

  4. Mark M

    Not sure where the confusion lies. We must take first two games which means Cain and the Bum. It also means Volgy first and then Timmy in the pen, Zito is useless there. All hands on deck seems clear to me in the context he’s using it. It also gives him a chance to see how the lefty righty matchups are working against the Reds and affords a chance to make adjustments. If things go well and we win, it’s Zito in game 3. Otherwise, if fresh, you go with Timmy cause of his record in the playoffs.

    The biggest difference this year is Lincecum isn’t the dominant #1 he was which really sucks. Everything would fall into place more clearly if he was in form. Bochey is spot on in his approach for this year’s team.

    October 5th, 2012 10:16 am

  5. Brady

    Stan, if Bumgarner is poor on the road, why would you bump his start from Game 2 at home to Game 3 on the road?

    October 5th, 2012 10:34 am

  6. Bray

    Stan- That’s exactly why Bumgarner should start at home, and Zito on the road.

    October 5th, 2012 10:55 am

  7. Stan

    Bumgarner over the second half hasn’t been a hot hand home or road..Zito,right now. If there ever was a time to trust in Zeets its now.

    October 5th, 2012 11:19 am

  8. Streetglide

    No coubt they should start Rusie, start Maglie in game two and keep Herbel ready just in case.

    October 5th, 2012 12:32 pm

  9. Streetglide

    …doubt, not coubt — my editor is on a coffee break. Further:

    In 1894, Rusie won pitching’s triple crown. He led the league in wins, going 36-13, strikeouts with 195, and a league best ERA of 2.78 (especially spectacular considering the league average that year was 5.32).

    36-13????? Wow…

    October 5th, 2012 12:38 pm

  10. brady

    Stan, I’m still confused. Your original statement was that Bumgarner is poor on the road, and Zito is equally good home and road. But your conclusion is play Zito at home and Bum on the road. Makes no sense.

    October 5th, 2012 2:37 pm

  11. Steve

    Interesting history Streetglide. Here’s something more current: of the 46 NL pitchers that qualify for the ERA title, Tim Lincecum is dead last and the only one with an ERA above 5.00. Zito’s ERA is in the low 4.00s, but the Giants have won his last 11 starts and there’s that incredible lifetime stat of his winning percentage (believe it’s above 90%) when he gets 4 or more runs support. Be afraid if Lincecum starts, be very afraid.

    October 5th, 2012 2:43 pm

  12. Zach


    On the surface I agree with Vogelsong in the pen; however, because he seems to have a stronger make-up (at least this year), he should get a playoff start. When the lights are brightest, you needs guys un-afraid and willing to step up. Also, starting Zito in Cincy would be devastating…I like Zito and enjoy watching him pitch better this year, but he is still mentally fragile and would shrink in that tiny park. 1. Cain 2. Bum garner 3. Vogelsong…rest, TBA.

    October 5th, 2012 4:27 pm

  13. KauaiRobert

    Again…Cain, Bumgarner, Lincecum, Zito. Vogelsong in the pen.

    October 5th, 2012 6:19 pm

  14. Johnc

    I think all hell is going to break loose and the hitters are going to dominate in this series. Giants hitters can stay with the Reds and will have to in order to move on. I expect the unexpected..a slugfest.

    October 5th, 2012 7:56 pm

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