clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Madison Bumgarner homered off Clayton Kershaw again

Sunday's Say Hey features the best pitcher reaction shot ever, the travel woes of David Price's dog and the triumphant return of C.C. Sabathia.

Los Angeles Dodgers v San Francisco Giants Photo by Jason O. Watson/Getty Images

Listen, we know it’s tough to catch up on everything happening in the baseball world each morning. There are all kinds of stories, rumors, game coverage and Vines of dudes getting hit in the beans every day. Trying to find all of it while on your way to work or sitting at your desk just isn’t easy. It’s okay, though, we’re going to do the heavy lifting for you each morning, and find the things you need to see from within the SB Nation baseball network, as well as from elsewhere. Please hold your applause until the end, or at least until after you subscribe to the newsletter.


The season is a week old today, and in that time there have been two incidents that perfectly illustrate the ongoing debate about adopting the designated hitter in the National League. The first features a pitcher hitting a home run, and it's not Kente Maeda of the Dodgers. It's Madison Bumgarner, who did something yesterday that only a few other players have done. He hit his second career home run off of Clayton Kershaw in game three of the Giants-Dodgers series that had already been endlessly entertaining. Bumgarner is one of the better hitting pitchers in baseball, but hitting two homers off of one of the best pitchers in the game is unbelievable. In fact, Bumgarner is the only player to hit multiple homers against Kershaw since the start of last season! And Kershaw himself didn't really believe it either, giving us one of the greatest pitcher reaction shots of all time. If the National League had the designated hitter, none of that would have happened.

The other side of the coin is, of course, Kyle Schwarber. His season-ending ACL and LCL injuries are incredibly unfortunate, and though he's keeping a positive attitude about it, Schwarber's outfield ability has been questioned for quite awhile. (As has his ability to play first and catcher.) If the NL had the designated hitter, the Cubs would be able to shield Schwarber from fielding and take advantage of his greatest skill, his hitting. But Schwarber is just the latest victim of the DH-less NL. Pitchers tend to be the typical injured party, with hurlers like Adam Wainwright and Max Scherzer missing time in 2015 with injuries sustained while batting. Scherzer, who spent years in the American League before signing with the Nationals, has particularly strong opinions about pitchers hitting.

Whatever happens with the DH in the National League, one faction will definitely be upset. And for good reason, since both sides of this issue have meaningful arguments. Getting rid of pitchers hitting would deny us the mind-blowing amazingness that we experienced when Bumgarner hit ANOTHER homer off of Kershaw. But adopting the DH would create 15 new jobs, and help keep both less-adept fielders and pitchers safe from severing all the tendons in their knees (and other assorted injuries). Regardless of everyone's feelings, nothing can be done about this issue until the next Collective Bargaining Agreement needs to be negotiated, which will happen prior to the 2017 season. And despite comments made by John Mozeliak and Rob Manfred back in January that indicated that opposition to the DH was softening, Manfred himself walked back those comments just days later. We have no idea what will happen in the distant offseason, but in the meantime let's hope we see a lot more pitchers hitting homers and a lot fewer injuries.