Bumgarner named NL Pitcher of the Month

Giants lefty wins award for second time this season

Bumgarner named NL Pitcher of the Month

DENVER -- Madison Bumgarner and Clayton Kershaw are carrying on their own version of the Giants-Dodgers rivalry.

Bumgarner, the Giants' 25-year-old left-hander, was recognized Wednesday for his dominant August performance by being named National League Pitcher of the Month. He also won the award in May. Kershaw, Los Angeles' lefty ace, earned the league's top pitching honor in June and July.

Kershaw also received votes in the balloting for August.

"It's hard to see how anybody could beat him out, the way he's been throwing," Bumgarner said.

The same could be said about Bumgarner, who struck out a league-high 56 batters while walking three in six August starts. He finished with a 4-1 record and a 1.57 ERA while logging 46 innings, another NL high. Additionally, opponents batted .164 off Bumgarner, the second-lowest mark among qualifying NL pitchers.

Bumgarner's two-hit shutout

Kershaw virtually matched Bumgarner in August, posting a 3-1 mark with a 1.80 ERA, 44 strikeouts and eight walks in 40 innings.

Bumgarner never has preoccupied himself with individual deeds.

"It's not why I'm here," he said. "But it's a good accomplishment. I couldn't have done it without everybody. We played really good offense and unbelievable defense [in August]."

Bumgarner began his big month with a two-hit shutout at New York on Aug. 3. He added a one-hit shutout over Colorado on Aug. 26 in which he maintained a perfect game for seven innings and matched a personal best with 13 strikeouts.

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.