Daniel Hudson most certainly earned his pay yesterday, and then some. The 24-year-old right-hander for the Arizona Diamondbacks not only pitched a complete game against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Sunday afternoon at Chase Field, he also walloped a homer and drove in two runs to help his team secure a 4-1 victory.
Hudson earned only one run and five hits during nine innings, but compensated for it by swatting a home run in the sixth and then nailing an RBI single in the seventh that scored Ryan Roberts and Chris Young. The pitcher wasn't the only one producing runs for the D-Backs, as Roberts also provided a one-out, solo jack into the left field seats at the top of the second inning.
Sunday's victory allowed Arizona to win the weekend series against Los Angeles, and thus kick off the second half of the season on a high note.
The Diamondbacks started off the series with a 4-6 loss on Friday night after the Dodgers scored early and often. The Blue Bombers racked up a 6-0 lead by the seventh inning, thanks to both Joe Saunders failings on the mound and El Lay slugger Matt Kemp's two-run homer and four RBIs during the game. The Snakes attempted a late-game comeback with four runs in the seventh, but were shut down in the final frames by the Dodgers' bullpen.
The D-Backs bounced back on Saturday for a 3-2 win, however, aided by the pitching efforts of Ian Kennedy. The Arizona pitcher fanned seven batters and allowed only two runs by L.A. as Brandon Allen proved to be the hero of the game with a three-run homer in the bottom of the second inning.
The victories over the Dodgers enabled to Diamondbacks (51-44) to keep pace with the San Francisco Giants, who also scored two wins over the weekend. Arizona remains 3.5 games out of first place in the National League West, and will attempt to gain some ground during this week's three-game series with the Milwaukee Brewers (51-45) at Chase Field.
The Brew Crew is currently the best team in the NL Central and will certainly prove to be formidable foes with their powerful bats and potent pitching. The series starts tonight when Josh Collmenter (4-5, 2.92 ERA) battles lefty Randy Wolf (6-6, 3.65) on the mound. First pitch is at 6:40 p.m. TV: Fox Sports Arizona. Radio: KTAR 620-AM. For more information and tickets, visit www.dbacks.com.
Benjamin is the clubs editor at Phoenix New Times. He covers local nightlife, music, culture, geekery, and fringe pursuits.