Hudson has back surgery, should be ready for spring

Braves pitcher Tim Hudson had back surgery for a herniated disc on Monday, and doctors said the 36-year-old right-hander should be fully recovered for spring training.

His back bothered him to varying degrees for the past two seasons, but surgery was necessitated only after the pain increased during Hudson’s recent offseason workouts. He could be cleared to resume throwing in about six weeks.

Hudson was 16-10 with a 3.22 ERA in 33 starts in 2011, leading the Braves in wins, ERA and innings (215) and ranking second in strikeouts (158). He missed a start in late May with back stiffness.

“We’ve known for a couple of years, but it just kind of escalated to the point where he needed to do this,” Braves general manager Frank Wren said. “The hope all along was that this would be a post-career surgery, but the reality is it just got progressively worse.”

Hudson is owed $9 million in 2012 in the last season of a three-year, $28 million contract extension that also includes a $9 million option for 2013 with a $1 million buyout.

He needs to pitch only 156-1/3 innings in 2012 to get a $500,000 bonus for totaling 600 innings during the 2010-2012 seasons.

“He feels really good, like this is something that will help him and potentially extend his [career],” Wren said. “From what the doctors have indicated to us, and in talking to Tim last week, he was limited in his throwing last spring [by back stiffness] and feels like he’ll be more able to throw this year than he was last January and in the spring.”

The Alabama native has lived up to or even outperformed his contract, which he signed in November 2009 after coming back from ligament-transplant elbow surgery.

Over the past two seasons, Hudson went 33-19 with a 3.02 ERA and .232 opponents’ average in 443-2/3 innings. For comparison, Phillies star Cliff Lee was 29-17 with a 2.77 ERA and .234 OA in 445 innings during that two-year span, and Giants ace Tim Lincecum was 29-24 with a 3.08 ERA and .232 OA in 429-1/3 innings.

“It speaks volumes to the competitor and teammate he is,” Wren said. “He’s going to give everything he can. He was going to pitch, and there were times when other guys probably would have said I can’t go.”

Hudson was 2-4 with a 4.56 ERA in his last eight starts before back stiffness sidelined him one turn in May. He went 9-2 with a 2.09 ERA in his first 14 starts after returning.

Among National League starters, he had the fourth-best groundball ratio and allowed the fourth-lowest slugging percentage.

71 comments Add your comment

Weaseal

November 28th, 2011
7:27 pm

Hope Huddy is Back & better then ever -Happy Holidays !!!

jester

November 28th, 2011
7:35 pm

Hudson is awesome, he will be back better than ever!!!!!

Playoffs!!!

November 28th, 2011
7:36 pm

Heard about this on the MLB network about an hour ago before seeing it here.

bravofan_53

November 28th, 2011
7:36 pm

good luck Huddy

charles

November 28th, 2011
7:37 pm

better hold on to jj.

JoshTown

November 28th, 2011
7:48 pm

Huddy’s the man. Glad he’s doing it now, and hopefully gives himself (and the Braves) an even better chance at winning in ‘12. Go Braves!

Mike Mangan

November 28th, 2011
7:54 pm

The Hudson,s Tim and wife Kim are both class acts not only on the mound with Huddy as his bride does quite a bit in special organizations thru greater Atlanta…With the young staff the Braves have… Huddy is truly the leader of the Band who helps all the Braves youngsters to pitch way beyond their years.
Let us all wish The Hudson family the very best this holiday season and it is our hope that come spring training the even more improved Tim Hudson is ready once again to lead the Bravos in the quest for NLdivision championship,As well as National league a a trip to the fall classic.Huddy,Thanks for all you do on and off the mound.and in Life …

Mike Mangan

November 28th, 2011
7:55 pm

Enter your comments here

bruce

November 28th, 2011
8:16 pm

glad he “got ‘er done.”

Felix

November 28th, 2011
8:18 pm

Get well soon Huddy! You were one of the few Braves that didn’t choke last Sept., so we need you back healthy and ready to go.

NateJacket

November 28th, 2011
8:33 pm

I had the same surgery 18 months ago. Letting it heal before he re-engages is key. I’m 38 and back a full strength but it took about 10 months to get there.

Good luck THud. (perhaps a new nickname?) nah…

NateJacket

November 28th, 2011
8:34 pm

Enter your comments here

NeedUpdatedInfo

November 28th, 2011
8:38 pm

Does AJC ever update this sports section ? Look at baseball front page : GM Wren’s son 11/5, Terdoslavich article 11/9 and Jeff Schultz column 11/9 ? Whats up with this AJC owes its fans better coverage Like they say COME ON MAN !!

Mr. Enigma

November 28th, 2011
8:39 pm

You can forget about them trading Jurrjens now.

NeedUpdatedInfo

November 28th, 2011
8:39 pm

Correction Schultz column dated 11/1 !

Jo Bling

November 28th, 2011
8:56 pm

NeedUpdatedInfo: maybe, uh, because it’s the offseason?

Sam

November 28th, 2011
9:00 pm

Amazing video of a high school senior from Columbia TN who kicks the ball dead straight 75-80 yards in the air. He was successful on 54 of 54 attempts this season….100%. Now he needs a college team.

Watch for yourself…it is unreal!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S_JKwgwFY3g

ray

November 28th, 2011
9:05 pm

one of the few major trades that actually benefitted the team long term. even at less than 100%, he gives you more than anyone else. he’s truly both a terrific player and person.

PS don”t know why they couldn’t have the surgery 6 weeks ago.

smallmouth6

November 28th, 2011
9:28 pm

Ray, I agree from beginning to end of your comment.

NeedUpdatedInfo

November 28th, 2011
9:57 pm

JoBling its that way during season and just cause its off season there is always news to report

Mike McDonald

November 28th, 2011
10:53 pm

The Braves are a total basket case on the field and in the front office. They need a medial discharge from top to bottom. How long can the follies epitomized by the likes of Mike Hampton, et al, be allowed to continue? Call the coroner, John Malone and mercifully stage an old-fashioned Irish wake before you auction off the farm.

Carlos Collazo

November 28th, 2011
11:00 pm

Yeah I would think that this makes Jurrjens a bit more valuable to the Braves and the chances of him being traded are probably less now. Also since, Garza is now on the market teams will look to him before JJ.

bostonbravo

November 28th, 2011
11:15 pm

Oh crap!! not Huddy!!!!?? the #1 (inc. Chipper) reliable Bravo hero!
congrats JJ on your new contract.

bravesfaninNashville

November 29th, 2011
3:56 am

Just what would happen if we had a full season of Michael Bourn instead of the poor performance of Nate McClouth and Jordan Schafer, a healthy line drive hitting Martin Prado and a healthy back to being a disciplined hitter in Heyward? Our outfield should be much better than last year even if we don’t get to make a trade for Quintin, or Lorenzo Cain or some other OF help. It seems we might be stuck finding out how healthy JJ is in spring in order to get full value for him and Martin Prado would be most valuable to a team that is desperate for a 2B. I hope FW doesn’t make a rash decision as our team is already better than last year based on a full season of Bourn in CF and healthier Prado and Heyward to start the year. I’m most worried about Tommy Hanson and JJ as IMHO we need to get as much for them as we can as soon as they re-establish value. I don’t think Tommy’s arm slot is a good long term bet. With all the good pitching we have coming up from the minors we need to play it how Tampa does and have a young and cheap staff and put some money into the starting 8.

Couch Tater

November 29th, 2011
5:38 am

Hudson had surgery Monday after the Alabama/Auburn game. Seems like a radical way to avoid the calls from Tuscaloosa.

wjones

November 29th, 2011
7:22 am

Over on Twitter, DOB has issued folks to come up with a team that had 3 22-yo or younger players in the starting lineup who at least got into the playoffs. I haven’t found one yet, but I have come close with a very interesting team—the 1967 Boston Red Sox. That was the “miracle team” that won the pennant on the last day of the season over the Twins and Tigers and White Sox, I believe. Anyway, they only had two guys 22–Center Fielder Reggie Smith and ill-fated Right Fielder Tony Conigliaro. However, they also had two guys who were 23–First Baseman George Scott and Second Baseman Mike Andrews. Also had two guys who were 24–Shortstop Rico Petrocelli and Third Baseman Joe Foy. Their catcher, the extremely light-hitting Mike Ryan, was 25. So the old-timer was MVP and Triple Crown winning Left Fielder Yaz, who was 27! Pretty impressive. And the manager was also a rookie—Dick Williams.

@Fredo

November 29th, 2011
7:59 am

@NeedUpdatedInfo Dude, you are barking up the wrong tree, brah. Bunch of us fans always play this game. See news on Braves reported, check time and date and then take bets on how far behind the AJC is. You are wasting your time asking for improvement. Fans here don’t visit or view other MLB media enough to know that they miss out on coverage, both during the year when this paper’s beat writer takes off every other week and in the offseason, when this beat writer takes off to get geared up to take off come Feb. Don’t worry. Brad, Beth and the gang will feed their bud some “best shape of my career” stuff soon enough. And you should also get ready from the assault you are in for from this beat writer and his clones. They don’t get interaction from most adults so when little convo they get here is threatened, they attack. Also, wait for the snark to begin in 3…2…1…

1eyedJack

November 29th, 2011
8:34 am

That sux. Get well soon, you’re going to be needed.

Paul Scanling

November 29th, 2011
8:50 am

Hudson is not an Alabama native. He was born in Columbus, Georgia.

stew

November 29th, 2011
9:03 am

Get your mind off this. JJ, Tommy, and Prado are dead to the team. Better get your mind thinking of what prospects are out there. Go get Olt and Profar, Montero, Middlebrooks and Reddick, Francisco and Stubbs, Arrenado and Wheeler, and Snyder and Gose. Trade Bourne. He won’t be here anyway.

bvillebaron

November 29th, 2011
9:08 am

Stew:

Why would you trade JJ, Hanson and/or Prado now when you would be selling low given that JJ and Hanson are coming off injuries and Prado had an off year?

charles

November 29th, 2011
9:12 am

what is wrong with using Hoover Hale Perez and getting Quentin and Ramirez.

stew

November 29th, 2011
9:36 am

All my deals are for good prospects. These deals are for our future. Trade them before we lose out on them. All of them could bring a lot in return.

Supes

November 29th, 2011
9:48 am

Jair will still be traded, it maybe during spring training and or during the season but he isn’t likely to finish the 2012 season as an Atlanta Brave.

Wishing Huddy a speedy recovery.

KC

November 29th, 2011
9:51 am

DOB,
Who are our Rule 5 Draft eligable players that we could loose? Does anyone know. I know the Rule 5 Draft is up comming and I have not seen a list for the Braves for who we might loose to the Rule 5 Draft.

Juan

November 29th, 2011
10:15 am

What Happen with the BLOG….Is dead….is this the main blog?????

Hudson went to AUBURN!!

November 29th, 2011
10:18 am

Regards to Paul Scanling’s comments: (WHERE have you been?)… Hudson even played baseball for AUBURN!!

Murph

November 29th, 2011
10:23 am

What’s up with the main blog??? No more comments? I blame Ward.

jeffrey d

November 29th, 2011
10:24 am

I think we All Got Perma-Bozo’d!! Bank on It!!!

Murph

November 29th, 2011
10:31 am

If we got banned… would we be allowed to post on news stories? I wouldn’t know (never been banned).

It better get fixed before Ward wakes up this afternoon or there’s going to be hell to pay.

Bill

November 29th, 2011
10:32 am

Winter Meeting 2nd week of Dec… 6th…News will pick up then and DOB will be there to cover the news.
Maybe Braves will rock the boat and catch a couple big fish. On the other hand the fish may not be biting…maybe Braves not using right bait?

David O'Brien

November 29th, 2011
10:33 am

I’ll get a new blog up today, folks. In meantime, let me take a look and see if I can figure out why current main blog’s not taking comments.

jeffrey d

November 29th, 2011
10:34 am

Why would we all get banned?

David O'Brien

November 29th, 2011
10:36 am

OK, made a quick change to a setting, main blog should now be re-opened for comments.

Bill

November 29th, 2011
10:37 am

Get well Tim..we need you bad…

Jay Dubu

November 29th, 2011
11:04 am

The Braves are in need of starting pitching depth. Hanson, Hudson, and JJ are all dealing with surgery/injuries during the off season, so you can not be sure of what you’re going to get from them next season.

The rest of the potential starters are all very young.

Brave New World

November 29th, 2011
12:11 pm

Sign Jimmy Rollins and Juan Pierre and we have speed at 3 positions.

alanfalcon

November 29th, 2011
1:18 pm

Huddy is the type of leader our young staff needs in setting work habits and tenacity on the mound, he is very much like wag’s in that respect.

Car3boogie

November 29th, 2011
1:35 pm

have you heard the name Josh Reddick come up? Would be a great addition.

Mark's for the Braves

November 29th, 2011
1:47 pm

Get well Huddy and War Eagle! Be ready for a great 2012–we need you!

Ken Stallings

November 29th, 2011
3:24 pm

So, our best pitcher by far, and the only one to secure wins down that critical stretch, was injured also. Huddy doesn’t say much, but he could say more than most if he cared to. He’s a true pro — just does his job!

Ken Stallings

November 29th, 2011
3:44 pm

DOB, to answer your challenge:

1969 New York Mets: won NL East and World Series

Amos Otis: 22, OF
Nolan Ryan: 22, SP
Gary Gentry: 22, SP

Ken Stallings

November 29th, 2011
3:47 pm

Left out on that NY Mets team: Bob Heise: 22, SS

So, that was four starting players.

Ken Stallings

November 29th, 2011
3:52 pm

Gentry started 35 games in 1969 and Ryan started 10. While a case could be made that Ryan was a quasi starting pitcher/bullpen pitcher, Gentry was one of their horses in the starting rotation. Plus Otis and Heise were in the starting lineup for most of their games. And good heavens! I left out 21 year old 3B Wayne Garrett. Otis and Heise sometimes started while Garrett started over 100 games at 3B.

jim

November 29th, 2011
3:56 pm

As I recall, the usual startng OF for the 69 Mets was Cleon Jones, Tommy Agee, and Ron Swoboda. Otis was a part-time player. Bob Heise was a name I cannot recall. Did you mean Bob Weise? Weise was an infielder who had substantial plaing time at 2B, but I don’t think he was 22 years old.

PMC

November 29th, 2011
4:14 pm

Tattoo removal too maybe to get those green eggs and spam off the inside of his forearm?

David O'Brien

November 29th, 2011
5:13 pm

DOB, to answer your challenge:

1969 New York Mets: won NL East and World Series

Amos Otis: 22, OF
Nolan Ryan: 22, SP
Gary Gentry: 22, SP
Ken Stallings

No, the question was the last pennant winner with three LINEUP REGULARS who were 22 or younger, not one lineup regular and two starting pitchers.

Ken Stallings

November 29th, 2011
5:39 pm

Ah, more research!

I presume there is an answer available, right?

Farnsworthy

November 29th, 2011
6:01 pm

Trade Hoover? Who the heck is Hoover?
J.Edgar?
A guy named after a vaccuum cleaner?

Mitchell

November 29th, 2011
6:26 pm

No Tim Hudson team has ever won a playoff series which begs the question, who were/are the bigger choke artists, the A’s or the Braves?

Tough call.

I feel bad considering his talent and accomplishments that he’s never even pitched in a league championship series let alone a World Series.

I really hope he’s not holding his breath about making the playoffs in 2012.

The team he plays for sucks.

Mitchell

November 29th, 2011
6:28 pm

Brave New World

November 29th, 2011
12:11 pm

Sign Jimmy Rollins and Juan Pierre and we have speed at 3 positions.

Pipe dreams, my friend.

Grinch

November 29th, 2011
6:33 pm

Well next season is off to a horrid start. Now Huddy is a question…everyone knows that back surgeries tend to lead to more back surgeries. No shortstop. No RF. Uggla destined to repeat his opening season slump like he does every year. This team could be out of it by May.

Lobosolo

November 29th, 2011
6:55 pm

Ah, Mitchell, the armchair with the constant diaper rash whines again… pick up some ass-salve and a new team, cryboy…

Gil In Mechanicsville

November 29th, 2011
8:01 pm

“Underdoes” back surgery… Like the proof readers, but different…

pcb mike

November 29th, 2011
8:28 pm

Best wishes, Huddy. Great pitcher, class guy. Hope you can pitch another 5 years.

HSVBRAVE

November 29th, 2011
8:58 pm

If you have had a herniated disc for more then two yrs and most of your pain is in your back, a simple discectomy will not improve your back pain. Hopefully his back pain will continue to keep his stats at the top of the league

Sam

November 29th, 2011
9:26 pm

Amazing video of a high school senior from Columbia TN who kicks the ball dead straight 75-80 yards in the air. He was successful on 54 of 54 attempts this season….100%. Now he needs a college team. Wants to go to Georgia Tech!

Watch for yourself…it is unreal!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S_JKwgwFY3g

Billy

November 29th, 2011
9:38 pm

Sam don’t you have something better to do…this is not a football blog.

Ken Stallings

November 30th, 2011
2:05 pm

DOB,

OK, here’s your answer. The “baby” Big Red Machine of 1970. They lost the World Series to Baltimore, but as they say the “rest was history!”

Johnny Bench (C): 22
Dave Concepcion (SS): 22
Bernie Carbo (LF): 22

The “old” men on the team as starters in the regular lineup were Pete Rose (RF) at 29, and Tommy Helms (2B) at 29. It has to rank as one of, if not the, youngest team to ever win a league pennant.

Gary Nolan was a regular SP at 22, and Wayne Simpson also as a SP at 21. Relief pitcher and closer, Don Gullett was only 19!

The old man of the team was 33 year old Bo Belinsky, a relief pitcher! There were only five players over 30 on the roster!

Brave New World

November 30th, 2011
3:24 pm

Mitchell: You are likely correct that getting Rollins and Pierre is a pipe dream. But, if we could, would you be for or against such moves? I just saw that Derek Jeter is the highest paid shortstop at about $17 million per year. Some team is probably going to pay Reyes that much or more, but I think Rollins, given his age and somewhat declining numbers might be had for $12 million and a 4 year deal. Pierre could be had for 2 years and $10-$12 million. Of the two, I think Rollins would have the greater impact on the Braves (including leadership).

Damon Dingle Barryhill

December 1st, 2011
12:48 pm

Mike: Huddy’s your mancrush eh bro?

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