For sentimental purposes only, it seemed likely that free agent pitcher Tim Hudson would ultimately end up back in Atlanta where he’s spent the last decade, or back in Oakland where he began his MLB career. That wasn’t to say Hudson wasn’t heavily sought after by a number of teams throughout the league though. The Athletics tried to bring Hudson back, and according to ESPN’s Buster Olney, finished second in the running for his services before he agreed to a two year contract worth $23 million with the hated San Francisco Giants.
Oct 4, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Braves injured pitcher Tim Hudson in the dugout during game two of the National League divisional series playoff baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports
There is considerable risk in signing a 38 year old pitcher who is coming off a severe ankle injury, but the Giants are in a position where they can take a calculated risk on a multi-year deal. Chances are the Athletics were unable, and unwilling to extend themselves as far as the Giants did, so Hudson will now don the orange and black.
In the eyes of many, the mere thought of another of our former fan favorite Athletics joining the dark side of the Bay Area is enough to make us physically ill. I’ll admit, Hudson was one of the very few former Athletics I still held a soft spot in my heart for. As I’m sure many have said before, the Giants simply couldn’t live with themselves without a former member of the Athletics rotation on their roster since Barry Zito‘s time in San Francisco came to a close. It’s a tough pill to swallow, but it’s the reality of the situation.
Now the A’s have lost their fallback option should they be unable to retain Bartolo Colon. The signing of Hudson with San Francisco should accelerate the market for pitchers around the league, and thus the market for Colon. Despite the perception of pitching depth, the A’s definitely need to look to fortify their rotation. If it isn’t Colon, then they may have to turn to the likes of Roy Oswalt for depth, I would prefer Bartolo. Hopefully this development injects a sense of urgency into the Athletics, as the market will soon start to pick up and they won’t want o be stuck digging through the scraps.