Two weeks ago, Tim Hudson notched win #199 against the Nationals. After two unsuccessful bids for his two-hundredth win, Hudson and the Braves returned home to face the Nationals again. It turns out that Washington was just the slump-buster that Huddy needed. Atlanta jumped all over Gio Gonzalez early and pounded the Washington bullpen late as Hudson cruised through 7 innings to pick up his historic win.
After a scoreless first from Hudson, Andrelton Simmons didn't wait long to stake Atlanta to a lead. Simmons lined the second pitch Gonzalez threw over the left-field wall for the first leadoff home run of his career. Justin Upton drew a one out walk and scored on a double by Evan Gattis to give Hudson a quick 2-0 lead after the first frame.
The Braves kept on hitting, notching two more runs in the second inning. Hudson led off the inning and roped a double to left-center field that was a few feet shy of a home run. One batter later, Chris Johnson brought him home with a first-pitch RBI single. Johnson moved up to second on a wild pitch, and scored on a first-pitch RBI single from Freddie Freeman to make it 4-0.
Atlanta tacked on another run in the fourth inning, when Evan Gattis drove in Andrelton Simmons with a two-out RBI single. Gio Gonzalez would finish the inning without further damage, but Davey Johnson had seen enough from his starter. Gonzalez was out after four, having allowed 5 runs on 7 hits and 5 walks. He did strike out 9 Braves, however.
Hudson lost his shutout in the top of the fifth inning. Chad Tracy led off with a double, advanced to third on a groundout, and scored on a groundout. That made it 5-1 and was the only run the Nationals would get all night.
Huddy put an exclamation mark on his start in the bottom half of the frame. After two groundouts from B.J. Upton and Reed Johnson, Hudson stepped in against Zach Duke. Hudson took a 2-1 offering from Duke and drove it deep to right. Bryce Harper appeared to have a play on the ball, but instead channeled his inner Canseco, alley-ooping the ball off his glove and over the wall. It went in the books as Tim Hudson's third career home run. Atlanta tacked on two more in the frame, with a Freddie Freeman bases-loaded single. That made the score 8-1, a mark that held for the rest of the evening.
Hudson, after being somewhat shaky his past two starts, was in vintage form tonight. He only allowed 3 hits across 7 innings of work, walked 2, and struck out 6. With the win, Hudson becomes the third active pitcher to get to 200 wins, joining Roy Halladay and Andy Pettitte.
Atlanta will take on the Nats again tomorrow, with Paul Maholm facing off against Jordan Zimmerman. First pitch is scheduled for 7:10 PM.