Reports: Red Sox pursuing right-hander Tim Hudson

Reports: Red Sox pursuing right-hander Tim Hudson
November 8, 2013, 2:00 pm
Share This Post

Tim Hudson?

Really?

That's the latest from several corners of the Internet. CBSSports.com's Jon Heyman  reports the Red Sox are "a big admirer of the right-hander" and "have checked in" on the 38-year-old free agent. And Yahoo! Sports' Jeff Passan says on Twitter that the attraction "is mutual," as Hudson is "[tight] with David Ross [and] other Sox" -- Ross, of course, was Hudson's teammate in Atlanta -- and that Hudson "wants a ring."

Well, that's certainly interesting.

Now. On one side of the coin . . . 

  • Hudson is 38 -- he turns 39 in July -- and was last seen being carried off CitiField after suffering a ghastly broken ankle in a game against the Mets. They say he'll be back but, for what it's worth, the Braves didn't make him a qualifying offer.
  • The Sox already have not five, but six veteran starters -- Jon Lester, Clay Buchholz, John Lackey, Felix Doubront, Jake Peavy and Ryan Dempster -- under contract. And there are youngsters (Brandon Workman most notably) knocking on the door.

So why the Sox want Hudson, and what they'd do with him if they got him, isn't really clear.

On the other side . . . 

  • There's the undeniable "you can never have enough pitching" philosophy. This is also expressed as: "The minute you think you have too much pitching is the exact time you should go out and get some more."
  • Secondly (and more seriously), adding Hudson would free the Sox to trade some of their excess pitching (Dempster? Peavy? Even Lackey?) to fill positional holes in the outfield (if they lose Jacoby Ellsbury), first base (if they lose Mike Napoli), catching (if they don't retain Jarrod Saltalamacchia), etc. 

Hudson has been a more-than-solid pitcher during his years in Oakland and Atlanta -- see for yourself --  and, if the ankle is sound, wouldn't be a bad risk, even at age 38. He's made $9 million in each of the last four years, and, at his age and with his physical history, probably wouldn't command a whole lot more than that. 

One thing is certain: Hudson's acquisition would definitely mean there's more action coming on the trade front, since the Red Sox couldn't go into next season with seven veteran starters on the roster. (Ryan Dempster may have willingly gone to the 'pen for the postseason, but it's unlikely he'll agree to do it permanently.)

And the fact that they're pursuing him could mean they're leaning in that direction.