Dan Hudson ('08) Wins 15th & Pitches Arizona To Seven Game Lead
By ODU Athletics
Sept. 4, 2011
SAN FRANCISCO -- Former ODU pitching standout Daniel Hudson ('08) pitched seven strong innings allowing just one run on three hits with five strikeouts to win his 15th game of the year as the Arizona Diamondbacks defeated the San Francisco Giants, 4-1 Sunday.
The win in gives the Diamondbacks a seven-game lead in the National League West Division with 22 to play.
"You've got to continue pushing on," D-backs manager Kirk Gibson said. "It's a good feeling, though, I'm not going to lie to you. These guys feel good about themselves and they should."
The D-backs took two of three from the Giants over the weekend, bouncing back from a sloppy loss Friday to win back-to-back games started by Ian Kennedy and Daniel Hudson.
Arizona now heads to Denver for a three-game set with the Rockies. The D-backs and Giants will play one more time in a three-game series Sept. 23-25 at Chase Field.
Cody Ross helped the Giants start off on the right foot when he led off the bottom of the first with a home run to left field.
For a while it seemed that would be all the offense the Giants would need as San Francisco right-hander Ryan Vogelsong kept the D-backs in check through the first seven innings.
Meanwhile, Dan Hudson was being battled hard by the Giants, most notably Brandon Belt, who worked him for a 16-pitch at-bat that resulted in a strikeout in the second. The 16 pitches tied it for the longest at-bat of the season in the Majors.
"It was an unbelievable at-bat," Hudson said. "It was definitely frustrating for me. I was just throwing the ball down the middle of the plate. I didn't care if he got a hit. I just didn't want to face him anymore. I wanted him out of the box."
Vogelsong allowed just three hits, all singles, through seven and got Chris Young to fly out to start the eighth. Ryan Roberts, though, followed with a solo homer to tie things up.
That seemed to ignite the Arizona offense as Gerardo Parra followed with an infield single to end Vogelsong's day, and after pinch-hitter Geoff Blum worked a walk off reliever Jeremy Affeldt, Bloomquist broke things open with a two-run triple down the right-field line off Ramon Ramirez.
"I just was looking for a pitch that I could put a good swing on," Bloomquist said. "I haven't been swinging the bat that great, but I was able to find a hole, so it was nice and good for our team." Aaron Hill chipped in an RBI single to cap the inning that gave the D-backs a 4-1 lead.
"We could have lost our composure", said Gibson. "I think it tells us a little something about ourselves when we're able to push on, keep the game tight and give ourselves a chance and put ourselves in a position to win."
The four-run outburst gave Hudson a much-deserved win. The right-hander allowed just one run on three hits over seven innings to improve to 15-9.
"Hudson came back and shut us down," Ross said. "He's good. There's a reason why he's got however many wins he's got -- and he's got a lot. He pitches well. He pitches away from contact. He'll come in when he needs to. He's good."
Hudson, the three-time All-CAA pitcher is ODU's third all-time strikeout leader with 295 trailing only Justin Verlander of the Detroit Tigers ('04) with 427, and former ODU Major Leaguer and Hall of Famer Kevin Bearse ('87)with 325.
Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @dbackswriter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.