Kevin Gausman’s brilliance might go a little under the radar this first week of the season, because he remains without a decision thanks to some porous bullpen proclivities.
On Wednesday, though, Gausman outdueled one of the top starters in the game, high-profile Padres addition Blake Snell, a matchup that was highly anticipated in the series finale.
“First and foremost I’m a fan of baseball, so watching two great pitchers go toe-to-toe any day, I get excited for it, I wake up thinking about it,” Giants manager Gabe Kapler said. “Snell has been one of the better pitchers in baseball for the last couple of years; Gausman, we can say the same with respect to his performance last year. So it’s kind of a heavyweight matchup.”
Gausman, his fastball touching 97.7-mph at times and his split-finger fastball dipping wickedly, outpitched Snell, working seven innings and allowing four hits, a walk and one run while striking out five. He got 15 called strikes with his fastball, and nine swings-and-misses with his splitter.
“You know the runs are going to be at a premium and I thought we both threw the ball pretty well.” Gausman said. “It’s always fun going up against a guy that you know has incredible stuff and you know anytime you face a guy that’s won a Cy Young, you want to beat him, obviously, so you kind of elevate your game a little bit more.”