In an interview after his last start for the Atlanta Braves, Tim Hudson had a few words for his manager Fredi Gonzalez’s choice to take him out of the game before he finished enough of the game to be eligible for the win. His words are strong but not too disrespectful of the man making game decisions for the Braves.
“I would have liked the opportunity to have a decision. A hundred pitches, to me is not really a magic number to take you out of the game. You work real hard the whole game. There’s one pitch that a guy puts a good swing on, on a pitch away and ties the game up. Apparently, you need 16 years in the big leagues to get that chance.”
Many might have expected there to be some issue between Hudson and Gonzalez but that didn’t happen. That is good because it shouldn’t have happened. Gonzalez made the comment that he was fine with Hudson’s comments because he is a competitor. That is exactly why it shouldn’t be an issue because Hudson is right.
He should feel that he had the right and the ability to finish that inning. I don’t necessarily disagree with the choice to take him out. He was laboring and had thrown a hundred pitches through not so many innings so it made sense from the manager’s perspective. Hudson is a competitor for a reason though. He felt like he made a few bad pitches and then had the chance at a decision ripped away from him unjustly. He’s right and he should feel no other way.
Again, not to say it was the wrong decision but Hudson should never feel like he wants to come out of a game. That is why he is where he is. Leo Mazone went out to discuss things with Tom Glavine once upon a time and you could easily tell that Glavine wasn’t listening. Do you think Glavine ever wanted to come out of a game or thought he needed to come out? Of course he didn’t. The only difference here is that it got to the press because of when it was said.
In summation, I basically agree with both guys. Gonzalez probably made the right decision to protect the game and Hudson should feel that he should have stayed in the game. I would present that such a bulldog attitude from Hudson would probably have great and resounding effects in his next start.