for this game

Bumgarner, Giants shut out Pirates

Oct 2, 2014 - 4:37 AM Pittsburgh, PA ( - The San Francisco Giants walked into a stadium filled with rally towels and threw a wet blanket on the whole thing.

It was a familiar October script.

Madison Bumgarner pitched a four-hit shutout, Brandon Crawford hit the fourth playoff grand slam in team history and the Giants beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 8-0 in the National League wild-card game Wednesday night.

The Giants have won seven straight playoff elimination games, including five on the road.

Bumgarner (1-0) kept them out of trouble in this one, scattering four hits and a walk while striking out 10, and giving the Pirates little hope of scoring a rally against him.

So when Crawford homered with no outs in the fourth inning off Edinson Volquez (0-1), it cast a pall over the crowd of 40,629 -- a PNC Park record -- that lasted the rest of the game.

Indeed, it had none of the drama of Tuesday's instant-classic AL wild-card game between Kansas City and Oakland, which the Royals won in the bottom of the 12th inning.

The Giants are OK with that. They will face the NL East-champion Nationals in a division series with Game 1 scheduled for Friday in Washington.

"I think that experience really came into play today," said Giants manager Bruce Bochy. "The guys threw out some good at bats. They looked very quiet up there. You want to create those chances and get guys on base, and they were relentless doing that until we got, of course, a big hit from Crawford."

The Pirates were eliminated after making the playoffs for the second season in a row. They hosted the NL wild-card game last year, beating Cincinnati 6-2 in their first playoff game since 1992.

Pittsburgh manager Clint Hurdle stuck with Volquez after the Giants loaded the bases with no outs on singles by Pablo Sandoval and Hunter Pence and a walk by Brandon Belt.

He didn't call the bullpen until after Crawford lined a two-strike curveball into the right-field seats.

"Those three guys ahead of me getting on was huge. It set up the whole inning," said Crawford. "You get a little confidence when those three guys get on. I only wanted to get one (run). Fortunately I got four. When someone like (Bumgarner) gets four runs, it's lights-out."

Volquez looked shell-shocked. The right-hander hadn't given up more than three runs in any of his last 12 starts, going 5-0 with 15 earned runs allowed and 64 strikeouts in 76 innings since his last loss July 21 to the Dodgers.

Big swipe. Four-run swipe right there," said Hurdle. "We haven't run one of those with Edinson on the mound the second half of the season. That one put us in the hole that eventually just got bigger."

The last Giants grand slam in the playoffs was hit by Buster Posey in Game 5 of the 2012 NLDS against Cincinnati, San Francisco's third straight win facing elimination in that series.

They went on to beat St. Louis in three straight elimination games in the NL Championship Series that year before sweeping Detroit for their second World Series title in three years.

Volquez stayed in the game until walking Pence to lead off the sixth inning. Pence went to second base on Justin Wilson's wild pitch and scored on Belt's single to make it 5-0.

Belt added a two-run single off Jared Hughes in the seventh and Posey had an RBI hit off Bobby LaFromboise in the eighth.

Bumgarner, making his seventh postseason start at the age of 25, was perfect in four of his nine innings. The four his he gave up were all singles, including two to Josh Harrison. He threw 109 pitches, including 79 strikes.

Hurdle said Bumgarner pitched "a different game ... than what we scouted" and threw all his pitches, in particular a changeup he said he used to keep the Pirates off-balance.

"He had it all working tonight," Hurdle said. "Absolutely a very professional and well-pitched game by him tonight."

It was the second postseason start for Volquez, who has been overshadowed both times. The first one was Game 1 of the 2010 NLDS against Philadelphia when Roy Halladay threw the second no-hitter in postseason history.

Game Notes

The other playoff grand slams in Giants history came from Will Clark in the 1989 NL Championship Series and Chuck Hiller in the 1962 World Series ... The Pirates, one of the NL's better home teams in the regular season, finished two games behind St. Louis in the NL Central this season in a race that came down to the final weekend ... The Giants finished six games behind the Dodgers in the NL West.


    Oct 1 11:21 PM

  • Buster Posey single to center scored Gregor Blanco with two out. On the play, Joe Panik advances to second. Runners on first and second with Pablo Sandoval due up.

    Giants 8, Pirates 0  Top 8, 2 OutsOct 1 10:56 PM

  • Brandon Belt single to center scored Buster Posey and Pablo Sandoval with one out. On the play, Hunter Pence advances to second. Runners on first and second with Brandon Crawford due up.

    Giants 7, Pirates 0  Top 7, 1 OutOct 1 10:30 PM
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    Giants 7, Pirates 0  Top 7, 1 OutOct 1 10:30 PM

  • Brandon Belt single to right scored Hunter Pence with none out. Runner on first and Brandon Crawford due up.

    Giants 5, Pirates 0  Top 6, 0 OutsOct 1 9:56 PM

  • Brandon Crawford none-out, Grand Slam (1) to right scored Pablo Sandoval, Hunter Pence and Brandon Belt. Travis Ishikawa due up.

    Giants 4, Pirates 0  Top 4, 0 OutsOct 1 9:13 PM
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