Madison Bumgarner has been known publicly for a number of seasons as a pitcher who can handle his business in the batter's box. Now the San Francisco Giants' ace has a special category of his own among the league's power-hitting pitchers: first to hit two home runs on Opening Day.
Bumgarner raked a pair of solo home runs Sunday against the Arizona Diamondbacks, becoming the first pitcher in MLB history to do so.
His first was a towering drive off Arizona starter Zack Greinke, coming in the fifth inning. Have a look below:
Bumgarner clubbed the ball to a 112.5 mph exit velocity, the hardest home run ever hit by a pitcher, according to Statcast, since the technology became available in 2014. Ironically, Bumgarner also owns the titles for the second- and third-hardest home runs ever hit by a pitcher.
He got back to work in the seventh inning for his 16th career home run. This one came off left-handed pitcher Andrew Chafin, and gave Bumgarner the lead amongst all active pitchers.
The occasion also marked the second-straight year Bumgarner has started the season with a home run in the first week of play. Last season, the then-26-year-old launched a home run off fellow Cy Young winner and division rival Clayton Kershaw.
On the hill, Bumgarner was perfect — with seven strikeouts — through 5 and 1/3 innings until Arizona broke through for three runs to tie the game. His home run in the seventh inning put San Francisco back on top, 4-3. The Giants were unable to take advantage of Bumgarner's offensive power and pitching, losing on a walk-off, 6-5.