I’ve been slow to jump on the Hudson bandwagon but he’s making it very difficult for me to maintain my position. I was at his big-league debut, and while he struck out 10 Padres that night, I attributed it to the fact that he was facing a pretty bad lineup and nobody knew who he was. I’ve been waiting for hitters to stop biting on that splitter and it just hasn’t happened. Hudson has become a much better pitcher than I’d expected. There are no chinks in his armor. He prevents hits, keeps the ball in the park, has great command, and sports a ridiculous groundball/flyball ratio. He’s a young, healthy Kevin Brown. Throw out April, during which he allowed half of his 12 homers, and his ERA is an even 2.00.
Well, I don’t know about Kevin Brown. Then again, Hudson’s most similar pitcher through age 31 is Mike Mussina, a potential Hall of Famer. That’s not bad company to keep.