Gillaspie knocks out N.Y.
3-run HR in ninth is all Bumgarner needs in shutout
NEW YORK — Nobody takes to October like Madison Bumgarner and the San Francisco Giants.
Bumgarner pitched a four-hitter for his latest postseason gem, outlasting Noah Syndergaard in a classic duel between aces, and injury substitute Conor Gillaspie hit a three-run homer in the ninth inning that sent San Francisco to a 3-0 victory over the New York Mets in the NL wild-card game Wednesday night.
Gillaspie connected off All-Star closer Jeurys Familia, who led the majors this year with a club-record 51 saves while allowing only one home run.
With their ninth straight win when facing postseason elimination, manager Bruce Bochy and the Giants advanced to face the NL Central champion Cubs in a best-of-five Division Series. Game 1 is Friday night at Wrigley Field in Chicago.
The good news for the Cubs as they attempt to end a championship drought that dates to 1908 is that Bumgarner probably won’t start until Game 3 — and would only be available once on full rest.
That’s because the big left-hander has been untouchable under pressure.
The last time Bumgarner was on the mound in the postseason, he saved Game 7 of the 2014 World Series in Kansas City with five scoreless innings on two days’ rest to cap one of the greatest playoff performances in baseball history.
Including his four-hit shutout at Pittsburgh in the 2014 wild-card game, he has tossed 23 straight scoreless innings in winner-take-all Conor Gillaspie rounds the bases after his three-run homer off All-Star closer Jeurys Familia in the top of the ninth. DODGERS VS. NATIONALS Game 1: 5:38 p.m. Friday Dodgers (Kershaw 12-4) at Nationals (Scherzer 20-7), FS1 Game 2: 4:08 p.m. Saturday Dodgers (Hill 12-5) at Nationals (undecided), FS1 Game 3: TBA Monday Nationals (undecided) at Dodgers (Maeda 16-10), FS1 or MLB Game 4: TBA Tuesday* Nationals at Dodgers, FS1 Game 5: TBA Oct. 13* Dodgers at Nationals, FS1 x-if necessary games.
Now, the Giants have a chance to extend their pattern of even-year championships after winning World Series crowns in 2010, 12` and 14.`
In a matchup between the past two NL champions, Syndergaard went seven innings. Brandon Crawford doubled leading off the ninth against Familia. Angel Pagan struck out after fail- GIANTS VS. CUBS Game 1: 9:15 p.m. Friday Giants (Cueto 18-5) at Cubs (Lester 19-5), FS1 Game 2: 8:08 p.m. Saturday Giants (Samardzija 12-11) at Cubs (Hendricks 16-8), MLB Game 3: TBA Monday Cubs (Arrieta 18-8) at Giants (Bumgarner 15-9), FS1 or MLB Game 4: TBA Tuesday* Cubs (Lackey 11-8) at Giants (Moore 13-12), FS1 Game 5: TBA Oct. 13* Giants at Cubs, FS1 x-if necessary ing to get a bunt down, and Joe Panik walked.
Gillaspie, starting at third base for injured All-Star Eduardo Nunez, drove a 1-1 pitch over the fence in right field and pumped his arm as he rounded first.
Bumgarner closed with a 1-2-3 ninth against the 3-4-5 hitters and smacked his glove in triumph when rookie T.J. Rivera flied out to end it.