The San Francisco Giants will finally have their ace back.
Madison Bumgarner is set to return on June 3 at AT&T Park.
Manager Bruce Bochy told NBC Sports that Bumgarner will throw 70-75 pitches for the San Jose Giants on Thursday and then make his San Francisco return next Tuesday.
Bochy said there were considerations to bring Bumgarner back Friday, after just one rehab start, but the final decision was made to be more cautious.
“It’s just giving him another start to where he can be more stretched out and we don’t have to be careful with him,” Bochy said. “If you go back, we were talking about three (rehab starts originally), so he’s still ahead of schedule.”
Bumgarner hasn’t played in the majors since his dirt bike accident in April 2017. Bruised ribs and a shoulder sprain sidelined him for three months, leaving the Giants to find out the hard way what life was like without him. They dropped to last place in the National League with a 64-98 finish, their second-worst record since 1903.
Hoping for a fresh start in 2018 along with a healthy Bumgarner, it was crushing to see the ace go down with a fracture to his pitching hand during his final start of a spectacular spring. He sustained a fracture on the fifth metacarpal in his left pinky finger, with initial reports sidelining him for a minimum four to six weeks.
“It’s tough but these guys can handle it,” Bumgarner said at the time of his injury. “This obviously was not what I was expecting out of my last start. But it happened, and I can deal with it.”
Now, his rehab play has been just as strong. He threw 3 2/3 hitless innings for Triple-A Sacramento on Saturday and struck out eight.
“He was really where he needed to be as far as his delivery and command of all his pitches,” Bochy said to NBC Sports. “That’s why he’s coming up probably earlier than anticipated.”
What will Bumgarner be returning to?
A team currently at 25-29 sitting in fourth place of the NL West. However, that’s just four games out of first place.
The NL West is anyone’s taking right now and Bumgarner will sure give the Giants a boost.