Nunez's arm gets Bumgarner's back

Nunez's arm gets Bumgarner's back

SAN FRANCISCO -- Madison Bumgarner allowed just three runs in seven innings in a 13-4 win against the Braves on Sunday, but the Giants' ace had third baseman Eduardo Nunez to at least partially thank for the performance.

After Bumgarner allowed a two-run home run to Freddie Freeman in the sixth, cutting the Giants' lead to 5-3, Matt Kemp lined a ball down the third-base line. But it couldn't get past a diving Nunez, who promptly sprang up and fired a strike to Brandon Belt at first for the second out of the inning.

"Our defense, all around, was good," Bumgarner said. "The infield was really good. They had a lot of chances to make some big plays, and they did."

It wasn't the only impressive play Nunez made in the field. The third baseman effortlessly snagged a grounder from Chase d'Arnaud, before throwing across his body to get the Braves' shortstop out at first to end the game.

Nunez's defensive exploits would be overshadowed by the Giants' offensive eruption Sunday, one in which he contributed a home run in a 3-for-4 effort. However, his new teammates in the infield certainly noticed.

"I think when it comes down to it, we're a pitching and defensive team," said Giants second baseman Joe Panik. "That's what's carried us in the past, and we're going to need it to carry us going forward. Eduardo made some nice plays. That was a good sign."

Justin Wise is a reporter for MLB.com based in the Bay Area. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.