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Giants easing Madison Bumgarner toward Opening Day start

San Francisco Giants manager Bruce Bochy says Madison Bumgarner is "ready to go" for the start of the season after the ace left-hander pitched just two innings in his spring training start Tuesday.

Bumgarner will get five days off before his spring training finale, slated for Monday against Cincinnati, then five more rest days before taking the mound on Opening Day in Arizona on April 2.

"He's ready to go," Bochy said. "We feel like we've got him where we need him. These starters are right where we need to have them."

Bumgarner threw two shutout innings Tuesday against San Diego before heading to the bullpen to throw some more, taking breaks to simulate game conditions. He threw 85 pitches during the day.

"I was still doing innings down there and going through their lineup," Bumgarner told MLB.com. "I just happened to do it in the bullpen. I struck everybody out."

Bumgarner threw six innings in his previous outing as he continues to ramp up for the season. He has not allowed an earned run in each of his past three spring training starts, as he was built up from one inning on Feb. 25 to six on March 15. He has nine strikeouts in 12 innings from those three starts, and his spring training ERA is 2.50.

A four-time All-Star, Bumgarner has pitched more than 200 innings in each of the past six seasons and threw a career-high 226 2/3 innings last season.

"He's been carrying a heavy workload," Bochy told MLB.com. "We want to take care of him."

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