If the season’s conclusion is favorable for the San Francisco Giants, Saturday’s 3-2 win over the Cubs is one of those games they will circle and remember as pivotal in their quest. Here’s a look at some of the key numbers from this game.
How Bumgarner won
Giants starter Madison Bumgarner pitched six innings, but it was a very strong six. He finished with 10 strikeouts and no walks. Bumgarner has pitched 10 such games over the last seven seasons. The only pitchers with more in that span are Clayton Kershaw (19), Max Scherzer (14) and Cliff Lee (11).
Bumgarner threw first-pitch strikes at a 76 percent rate, his fourth-highest rate in a game this season. He attacked early with his slider, throwing it on the first pitch 44 percent of the time, his third-highest single-game rate.
Bumgarner totaled 13 (out of 103) pitches in hitters’ counts and reached three balls only three times.
-- Sarah Langs
Nunez gets a key hit
Eduardo Nunez, acquired to be an impactful bat, snapped an 0-for-12 slump with an RBI hit in the fourth inning. Nunez is now hitting .156 in his last nine games.
The issue might be one of tough luck. Nunez is 10-for-20 with the Giants when hitting a line drive. Typically, he hits .700 or better in those situations.
Add four more line-drive hits to Nunez’s ledger (giving him 14), and he’d be hitting .261 with the Giants instead of .225.
Crawford creates a run
Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford singled, stole two bases and scored on a wild pitch to extend the Giants’ lead to 3-1 in the sixth inning. After the game, per Andrew Baggarly of the Mercury-News, teammate Joe Panik jokingly compared Crawford to all-time steals leader Rickey Henderson.
It’s the first time in his career that Crawford stole multiple bases in a game. Crawford is now 6-for-6 in stolen base attempts this season. The six steals match his career high, set last season (when he was 6-for-10).
The stolen base is a weakness for Cubs starter Jake Arrieta, who has allowed 21 steals on 24 attempts this season. The 21 is tied for fourth most in the majors.
Typical Bochy endgame
As is his style, Giants manager Bruce Bochy used a lot of pitchers at the end -- five pitchers to get the final nine outs of the game, four of whom pitched less than an inning. The Giants have used 207 relievers for two outs or fewer this season, easily the most in the majors.
The biggest out of the game was Addison Russell’s lineout to right against Hunter Strickland in the seventh inning, with the bases loaded and the Cubs down by a run. Russell was 8-for-18 with the bases loaded before that at-bat.
Strickland averaged 97.9 mph in this outing. He retired Russell with a 98 mph fastball. Russell has seen 113 pitches of 97.5 mph or faster in his major league career. They’ve resulted in one hit, four walks and 20 outs.
-- Mark Simon