The Braves get their ace, Tim Hudson, back today, and this is no small matter. They also have Brian McCann and Chipper Jones back in the lineup today, which I don’t think is entirely coincidence, although the Braves tested McCann this morning to make sure his strained side could hold up to the rigors of hitting and throwing before agreeing to let him return a day earlier than expected.
“We’re all excited,” manager Fredi Gonzalez said of Hudson’s return. “We’re excited to have him back. We’ve got everybody in the lineup today and we’re all rooting for him to have a great outing.”
Gonzalez said that while Hudson could probably handle more than 100 pitches, the Braves would likely limit him to 100 for his first two starts.
It’s easy to take Hudson for granted. The undersized veteran doesn’t overwhelm hitters with 98 mph fastballs and is rarely mentioned as one of the top pitchers of hi era, although that’s exactly