REPORT: Washington Nationals acquire reliever Daniel Hudson
Daniel Hudson has been traded to the Washington Nationals, per source.#BlueJays
— Scott Mitchell (@ScottyMitchTSN) July 31, 2019
Hudson has not quite been the marquee name among Blue Jays relievers–that would be closer Ken Giles–but he has had a stellar season.
In 48.0 innings of work, Hudson has posted a 3.00 ERA and 9.0 K/9, and he has only given up five homers this year.
Despite Washington’s first-half woes in the bullpen, they have played awesome baseball in the last few months while firmly climbing back into the playoff race. They had made it known that they would pursue relief arms prior to the deadline, and Hudson could be a crucial guy in the middle innings or setting up closer Sean Doolittle.
The Nationals’ bullpen ranks just 22nd in fWAR, and they are dead-last in the majors with a 5.99 ERA. While Doolittle has been tremendous, offseason additions like Trevor Rosenthal (who has made just 12 appearances) and Kyle Barraclough (demoted to the minors) did not have the desired impact on the bullpen unit, and Washington has struggled to find dependable arms in the late innings.
Hudson’s peripherals are not quite as encouraging as his ERA. He is running an xFIP of 5.27, and his 4.31 BB/9 rate is rather high. Still, he has been effective, and now moves out of a division full of sluggers.
The Nationals are likely to pursue further depth pieces in the bullpen, according to Ken Rosenthal and Jayson Stark of The Athletic:
Nationals definitely aren't done. They've been telling teams they expected to trade for 3 relievers today. https://t.co/hH8WsAYjoM
— Jayson Stark (@jaysonst) July 31, 2019
Hudson may be just the first domino to fall for a Nationals team looking to make a run in the National League East.