Huddy Goes for 200 Game Thread, April 19

By popular acclamation, here’s a game thread. Tim Hudson is sitting on 199 career wins, and the Pittsburgh Pirates are all that stand between him and 200. His 199 make him the 113th-winningest pitcher of all time; four pitchers, including Roy Halladay, are tied with 200.

Hudson has been an extremely good pitcher for an extremely long time, and it’s worth asking the question: just how close is he to the Hall of Fame?

The answer is: not likely, though not impossible. He’s already had a better career than some of the more marginal pitching inductees, bottom-of-the-barrel HOFers like Jesse Haines and Rube Marquard, and short-career wonders like Dizzy Dean, Bob Lemon, and Addie Joss. But he’s 37, and he’ll need a bit of oomph on this side of 40 to get serious consideration.

As far as the traditional stats are concerned, his 54.8 rWAR is 76th of all time among pitchers, his 1814 strikeouts are 92nd of all time, and his career win-loss percentage of .657 is 21st of all time, and undoubtedly at least one column will be written to champion his candidacy largely on that basis.

Then there are a bunch of stats that Baseball-Reference tracks that make him look really good that I really don’t understand, but they all seem to do with linear weights. He’s 38th all time in Adjusted Pitching Runs, 23rd in Base-Out Runs Saved, 26th of all time in Situational Wins Saved, and 28th in Win Probability Added, the only one of those that I’d heard of. Among all starting pitchers, Hudson is 85th of all time by Jay Jaffe’s JAWS, which is an adjusted WAR that values a pitcher’s total career along with his peak.

I simply don’t believe that Hudson is one of the 30 best starting pitchers who ever lived. But he very well could be one of the 90 best. Right now, there are something like 58 major league starting pitchers in the Hall of Fame. (That is, excluding Negro Leaguers, relievers, and Dennis Eckersley.)

Per B-Ref similarity scores, Hudson’s 10 most similar pitchers are C.C. Sabathia, Roy Halladay, Dwight Gooden, Dave McNally, Jimmy Key, Dazzy Vance, Lefty Gomez, Ron Guidry, Lon Warneke, and David Cone. That’s two Hall of Famers and two guys in Sabathia and Halladay who have the potential of getting there, if they can both work through their 2013 reduction in velocity.

The last three years, Hudson’s WAR totals have gone like this: 5.7, 2.9, 1.6. If Hudson averaged 2.9 over the next three years, he would be a relatively strong Hall of Fame candidate, and even if he weren’t elected there would be a good chance that he would get inducted by the Veterans Committee. But if he can’t do that, then he’ll have to join Guidry, Key, Gooden, and others in the Hall of Very Good.

Obviously, it’s still a weird time here in Boston. So I’ll just play one of my favorite songs ever. Go get ’em, Braves.

85 thoughts on “Huddy Goes for 200 Game Thread, April 19”

  1. Maybe we’ll give Huddy the chance to become a legendary postseason pitcher this offseason :) Thanks for that, Alex.

  2. Last thread…#106sansho1
    Yeah, Johnson has been fantastic, but he’s also been to bloop hits what Heyward has been to loud outs.
    April 19th, 2013 at 4:52 pm

    He’s slugging over .600 and was over .500 last season. That’s not bloop hits.

  3. Johnson’s highest slugging percentage, in any year of his career, aside from the .503 in 2012, was .451. He also had one year where he slugged .378, and that was the year he had his second most PAs.

    The .503 thing was probably the doing of playing in Arizona.

  4. I’m a big fan of Chris “Hot Hand” Johnson. How can you not be after a start like this? But in the games I’ve been able to watch, it seems a 50/50 distribution of hard-hit balls and the bloop variety.

  5. @15 There will be another one after that, too. Given Hudson’s history at Coors Field, he’s not getting No. 200 there.

  6. Episode: When Tim Hudson suddenly loses the ability to get anyone out, to the degree that it is surprising he has full control of his limbs and his bowels, he is having an Episode. Usually in the sixth or seventh inning. (Added January 20, 2007.)

    This one just came earlier.

  7. @26 I guess the hits he’s given up have all been so high and hard that his ground balls haven’t seemed like much.

  8. Wow, this game sucks. Loss, no 200th win and those pretty runs allowed and run differential stats are going to take a hit.

  9. we are still undefeated when scoring 1 run or more. There is still time.

  10. @40 Kimbrel’s pitched in half our games and Avilan isn’t exactly what I’d call a sure bet.

  11. @43: No, not necessarily, just saying the bullpen isn’t as rough and ready as implied in your post. I think it’s defensible that you let Huddy try to work his way through his problems this early in the game. Obviously didn’t work out well, though, having tried that.

  12. Laird’s a replacement-level guy. He’s hit better than that so far, but his defense… honestly, did the scouts just scramble his and Gattis’ reports?

    39- Well, that streak seems likely to stay intact.

  13. @46 I would counter that Huddy’s been getting crushed all night, and he didn’t end up saving the bullpen AND he allowed more runs. But you’re right, the bullpen is not at 100%.

    Seems like it’s just one of those games where nothing works out.

  14. How is Laird even a catcher? You could see pushing a guy with Gattis’s bat with subpar defense (though he looks like the lovechild of Johnny Bench and Ivan Rodriguez, don’t ask, in comparison). But Laird? And sticking in the majors for 10 years?

  15. “Sweet Jesus muffins”!! Can you please throw the friggin ball over the plate in not into the ground?

  16. Lack of confidence in Bethancourt’s offense, lack of knowledge of Gattis, and at least Wren didn’t reproduce this mess for other positions.

  17. The Natspos game is way more enjoyable. Strasburg has given up four runs and thrown 110+ pitches through the sixth inning. Mets fans had a really loud chant going, “HAR-VEY’S BET-TER.” This is something the Natspos announcers simply cannot compute. All they do is talk about great Strasburg is, when he almost never pitches past the sixth inning.

  18. Bowman just tweeted how ironic it is that the first Braves player to be ejected this year was tossed by Sam Holbrook.

  19. I had never seen a game’s worth of Laird before this year. I can’t believe two years.

  20. BJ wanting to fight Holbrook is the lone highlight. Oh well. Someone keep Mrs. Hudson away from the park until 200.

  21. @57: He’s also the guy that had to be shut down last year on a pitch count, heading into the playoff stretch. You know, I wouldn’t want Strasburg if they gave him to us.

  22. Thanks, Gerald. We really needed to have one more reason to plant you on the bench til you grow splinters.

  23. That was basically a perfect game they just laid on us. Let’s pretend this didn’t happen and never speak of it.

  24. B.J. Upton: “He thought it was a strike. I can live with that. But the shooing away part, no I’m a grown man. You just don’t do that.”

    per Bowman.

    Kinda want to start a Holbrook is a racist campaign. Is it true? Who cares?

  25. @71 The problem with that is racism involves seeing skin color. We learned last October that Holbrook is blind.

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