It’s common to create the “youth vs. experience” debate when comparing a young and veteran player, but this doesn’t apply when comparing tonight’s Game 2 starters: Madison Bumgarner (SF) and Bronson Arroyo (CIN).
Bumgarner is only 23 years old, but there is a reason he is the No. 2 starter for the Giants. He may be young in relative terms, but he has playoff experience under his belt and World Series experience at that, as he was a member of the Giants’ championship team in 2010.
Not only was the southpaw a member of the World Series team, but he pitched phenomenally as a then- 21-year-old starter, and won two games while only surrendering a mere five runs in 20 innings pitched.
Arroyo has a World Series title as well, which he garnered on the Boston Red Sox magical curse-reversing run in 2004, but unlike Bumgarner, he was merely a member and not a contributor on his World Series team.
His poor pitching in the 2004 playoffs led the Sox to send him to the bullpen, where he did slightly better but still couldn’t lower his eventual 7.82 postseason earned run average that year.
Nevertheless, when Arroyo is on he’s on, and can’t be underestimated for that reason. However, on paper, this matchup goes to Bumgarner.