Yes, Hudson pitch was message to L.A. rookie

LOS ANGELES — In case there were any doubts, Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez confirmed, in some many words, that pitcher Tim Hudson was sending a message to Dodgers rookie Jerry Sands with that high-and-inside pitcher Monday.

He just didn’t mean for it to be so high, which is why Hudson gestured to the Dodgers dugout, to let the kid and his teammates  know the pitch was not meant to be at Sands’ head (he had to duck to avoid the pitch).

First, a bit of back story for those who didn’t see the game Monday.

The Dodgers surprised many by bringing up Sands from Triple-A on Monday. The 23-year-old North Carolina native was in low-A ball a year ago at this time, and hit 35 homers in the minors last season.

The former Catawba (N.C.) College doubled in his first big-league at-bat in the three-run first inning Monday, and added a sacrifice fly to right in the third inning.

His next time up, in the sixth, Sands got buzzed by a Hudson first-pitch fastball. Hudson made what appeared to be an apologetic gesture toward the home dugout, but in the next inning Dodgers left-hander Ted Lilly threw behind Nate McLouth.

Warnings were then issued to both dugouts by home-plate umpire Laz Diaz.

Sands shrugged off the incident.

“[Hudson] signed a ball and sent it over,” he told reporters. “It was a classy move by him and I appreciate that. He said `Good debut’ and told me it got away from him a little bit. But I wasn’t looking into it at all. I watched him growing up, so that’ll definitely go in the trophy case.”

Gonzalez said he didn’t think the incidents would lead to anything more.

“That’s just old-school baseball,” Gonzalez said. “The warnings were out, I think it’s no big deal. I think the rest of the series, nothing’s going to happen. Huddy did what he had to do and Lilly did what he had to do, and that’s it. Go on and play baseball.”

Gonzalez elaborated Tuesday on what he meant by “what [Hudson] had to do.”

“You hear old guys telling stories about Bob Gibson or Sandy Koufax, where a young kid would get a base hit off of him, and the next day, don’t get too happy because you’re going to get dusted [thrown at],” Gonzalez said. “And that’s what happened yesterday. And Lilly protected his guy; he sent a message back, and that’s it. It’s over with.

“I think that’s why Don [Mattingly, Dodgers manager] never reacted, and I didn’t react.”

On Hudson’s gesture to the Dodgers dugout, Gonzalez said, “He was just saying, I apologize, I didn’t mean to get it that close to his head.”

40 comments Add your comment

TC

April 19th, 2011
10:20 pm

And thats the way it should be….great old school baseball…thats why I love it…lets hope the traditions never change.

Ralph

April 19th, 2011
10:24 pm

Uggla couldn’t have hit that pitch with a boat paddle, another k

Will

April 19th, 2011
10:32 pm

I though the expression was “in so many words.” Learn something every day?

Ralph

April 19th, 2011
10:32 pm

Heyward should have caught that ball easily

therealjdalton

April 19th, 2011
10:35 pm

of course he threw at mclouth? if there is one brave i want to throw at its definitely mclouth

Ralph

April 19th, 2011
10:35 pm

1st inning is over and we are not behind yet.

Matt

April 19th, 2011
10:50 pm

Wait a second. What is ‘old school’ about throwing at a kid just because he got a hit in his major league debut. He didnt preen or pose or trot or show up Hudson in any way. I find it to be ridiculous, and I say that as a Braves and Hudson fan. Let the kid enjoy his debut, don’t throw at him.

Ralph

April 19th, 2011
10:52 pm

I guess Beachy knows if he wants to get his first win tonight he will have to pitch a shut out and possibly in to extra innings.

slobberknocker

April 19th, 2011
10:57 pm

Yeah, if your going to throw at a Brave, make it Nate. He needs all the help he can get to get on first base.

Ralph

April 19th, 2011
10:59 pm

I think i’m going to have to turn this game off, braves hitters are making me sick at my stomach, if I keep watching I am going to throw up.

Josh

April 19th, 2011
11:02 pm

I am sorry but the BRAVES are not the team of the 1990s anymore . There not ” good” . The braves will not win any more titles . I think this is like the 1980s braves . The team of the 1990s only comes around ever 140 years . Its not like they can be good for ever . sorry truth hurts. But life is just this way

Josh

April 19th, 2011
11:09 pm

Plus the only ” good” picture the braves have in my personal view is Hudson . The rest are good . But nothing like the great 3 . However there seems to be a down motion . Almost as if the braves are heading to last place . O well . All we can do is stay tuned …

Sam

April 19th, 2011
11:15 pm

*They’re not “good”

kwajbraves

April 19th, 2011
11:16 pm

What about if they sent a message to Koroda and score more than 3 runs today.

Matt

April 19th, 2011
11:30 pm

Nobody kills a rally like Nate McLouth

Braves fan in Augusta

April 19th, 2011
11:34 pm

Here we freaking go again

WTF

April 19th, 2011
11:40 pm

Yeah, you know. That was just “old school baseball”, you know, like Tony Conigliaro….yuck, yuck,yuck,yuck.

What’s the message? You can’t be a good hitter, or I’m going to ruin you?

Tim

April 20th, 2011
1:07 am

Hinske in the man! Finally a HR with a runner on base!

Bob the Blogger

April 20th, 2011
4:31 am

I guess Hudson is not into that “tipping the cap” thing.

Jeff

April 20th, 2011
5:02 am

I personally dont understand this at all. Not only the fact that it was intentional, hitting a rookie because he had a good opening day, but that Fredi would come out to the media about it?

Versiroth

April 20th, 2011
8:37 am

“Nobody kills a rally like Nate McLouth”

You mean the guy with two hits and a walk last night? Or maybe the guy with a better OBP than our lead off hitter? Or how about the guy hitting 250 with is 50 points better than Heyward?

wayxdog

April 20th, 2011
8:43 am

I tip my hat to all of them.

MikeR

April 20th, 2011
8:46 am

Sands should have been brushed back Monday night.. He was diving out over the plate and going the opposite way. Umpires should not be involved. The players policed themselves for 100 years without umps issuing warning and ejections.. We need to return to how baseball was played form 1948 -1967 including a real strikezone. Games would be much quicker.

N8

April 20th, 2011
9:38 am

“He didnt preen or pose or trot or show up Hudson in any way. I find it to be ridiculous, and I say that as a Braves and Hudson fan. Let the kid enjoy his debut, don’t throw at him.” Matt

Sometimes it’s not about injuring a guy. Or “sending a message”. Sure, Sands didn’t celebrate or anything like that (if he had, Hudson likely would have actually hit him).

The purpose of a “purpose” pitch is to cross up the hitter and cause them to stop leaning out over the lplate. Something Sands did in each of his first two AB.

Hudson was merely “taking back” his plate by letting Sands know that leaning out over it might end up being hazardous to his health if he continues to do it.

Nothing more, nothing less.

Lilly was simply protecting his guy.

Nothing more, nothing less.

N8

April 20th, 2011
9:43 am

“What’s the message? You can’t be a good hitter, or I’m going to ruin you?”

It’s comments like that, that simply have to come from somebody young, who can’t appreciate how the players policed themselves for damn near a century.

Pitchers were allowed to put the fear of god into the batter without getting warned of being ejected.

We live in world where every sport is pussified and the offenses are coddled and protected because the average, casual fan that doesn’t appreciate the little “battles” within the game of each sport would rather see a slugfest, a dunkfest, or 15 offensive TD in an NFL game.

Get over it. Nobody got hurt and the next time Sands faces Hudson, I bet Hudson will be able to get him to roll over on an outside pitch low in the zone, rather than him driving it to RF.

Mission accomplished…… And everybody still has all their toes and fingers.

BBG

April 20th, 2011
9:51 am

I agree with TC, great old school baseball. Gotta love it.

And to some of you other commentors, you might need to take a refresher in spelling.

Capt. Obvious

April 20th, 2011
10:35 am

Matt

How did you not like that? The Sands kid was hovering over the plate trying to mash everything. Are you saying Hudson is supposed to serve it up? Do you know anything about baseball or competition for that matter? Quit being sissyfied.

Bud Selig sucks.

Capt. Obvious

April 20th, 2011
10:36 am

Matt

One more thing. I think Cricket is the sport you are looking for.

Left my toothbrush at your moms

April 20th, 2011
12:03 pm

Umps to quick draw warnings are seriously taking away from the game. Some great memories are from brush backs in history. Either a stare down or Ventura vs. Ryan. Epic.

Dawg Fud

April 20th, 2011
12:30 pm

Hudson is pitching so poorly that he cannot even buzz a rookie. note to self.

the 4-6-3

April 20th, 2011
12:58 pm

not like the reds player last year who cleated the cards’ player in the face. love the way that was handled. huddy acted professionally; same with lilly, fredi, and don. neither club got too excited because thats the way the game is played. good stuff. now, can we get some hits?

the 4-6-3

April 20th, 2011
1:03 pm

sorry matt,
thats just the way the game is played. Sands is a rook and he’ll probably continue to get thrown at so as to keep him honest. We’re talking about big league pitchers too. These guys no what they’re doing. Rarely ever will you see a pitcher actually trying to hit a batter. There’s a difference between a little chin music and beaming a guy. Although now that I mention it, I’m not totally opposed to flat out hitting a guy– also part of the game, also necessary in some situations.

the 4-6-3

April 20th, 2011
1:14 pm

alright last post but i thought i would shed some light on Dave’s post last week about our slow starts in the past.

We’re 8-10 right now but i don’t see that as any cause for concern. still april. and we’re not hitting.

however i am pleased to see nate mclouth at .250 right now–not expecting much more out of him if he can hit .250 i’ll take it! and chipper is playing with some piss and vinegar in him too. he’s at .290, playing solid D, and he’s played in about 13 or 14 games. good signs from two big question marks.

I think we need to be patient with everyone else: Freeman needs time to come into his own, which I think he will. Heyward and Uggla should hit their strides come may. And who’s worried about Martin? I’m certainly not; he’ll be just fine.

Bullpen looks good. Lowe looks good. Jurrjens came out hot. I will say I’d like to see a little more out Hanson/Hudson. I think they’ve both got era’s in around 4. So that needs to come down, which you have to think it will.

All of that jibber jabber is just to say I think we will be fine. We have a very solid squad and we’re going to give the Phils alllll they want this summer. So hang in there Bravos–this slow start should soon be over.

Louise

April 20th, 2011
1:34 pm

Play Ball, I am so glad it’s baseball season, I love it!! way to go Tim

Dorothy Davis

April 20th, 2011
1:38 pm

Are you idiots watching the same games I am? Quit taking your frustrations out on Nate. There are many in that line-up that could use your frustration better. He is better than a lot of them.

Tony31005

April 20th, 2011
2:49 pm

I’m with ya Dorothy. There’s a lot of blame to go around. I think the lineup needs to be jumbled some. How about batting Chipper second then McCain, Uggla, and on down the ladder.

Tony31005

April 20th, 2011
2:52 pm

Chipper and Prado are the best situational hitters on the team and the first two spots are the set up men for the line up. Get those spots figured out and the rest will follow.

chem

April 20th, 2011
3:09 pm

Don’t diss cricket. Cricket pitchers get a running start and can bounce the ball off the ground.

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[...] manager Fredi Gonzalez later admitted that the pitch was meant to send a message to the surging rookie, but came in higher than intended. Hudson gestured apologetically toward the [...]

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