-- Royals manager Ned Yost was in the interview room at Kauffman Stadium a little while ago and said this when asked about the possibility of seeing Madison Bumgarner get into tonight’s game:
"Bumgarner’s a great starting pitcher. We’ll see what kind of reliever he is."
As Giants manager Bruce Bochy said a little later, "It’s that game."
Yes, that game, Game 7 of the World Series, when everybody is available and many of them, in all likelihood, will be used. That includes Bumgarner, whom Bochy said is good for about 40-50 pitches tonight, the normal amount Bumgarner throws in his bullpen sessions between starts.
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Otherwise, it sounds like every Giants pitcher is an option tonight except for Jean Machi, who threw three innings Tuesday night and would be the ultimate last resort. Bochy said he’s already gotten together with pitching coach Dave Righetti to go over how and when each pitcher would be used.
Yost also indicated he’ll be willing to stretch his top relievers, including the 7-8-9 tandem of Kelvin Herrera, Wade Davis and Greg Holland. Yost said he could get "multiple innings" out of all three.
Bochy seemed to be in a relaxed mood this afternoon, calm but serious. He said he wasn’t sure if he would address the team before tonight’s 7:07 p.m. local time first pitch; he would talk with a few players around the room first to get a pulse. Asked what kind of message he might impart, he grinned and said: "Win one for the Gipper."
There is one lineup change for the Giants. It’s Juan Perez in left field rather than Travis Ishikawa -- Bochy said he wanted the Giants’ best defensive lineup tonight behind starter Tim Hudson, but there’s more to the move.
"The kid keeps going out there and getting hits," Bochy said of Perez. "We’re not just getting defense. We’re getting a guy who’s swinging the bat as well."
This also gives Bochy a left-handed option off the bench for late in the game, with the Royals’ many right-handed relievers. They’re likely to see a few of them. It’s that game.
The Giants lineup:
And the Royals’ lineup behind right-hander Jeremy Guthrie:
Hudson will become the oldest pitcher ever to start a winner-take-all game in the World Series, at 39 years and 107 days. The Giants will be trying to win a decisive Game 7 for just the second time in franchise history. The first was two years ago, when they beat the St. Louis Cardinals in Game 7 of the NLCS. They have never won a decisive World Series Game 7 in four tries.