Last season, the St. Louis Cardinals made a massive overhaul in the bullpen under the newly appointed "interim" manager Mike Shildt in July. Shildt would later by signed 'officially' as manager for the Cardinals through the 2020 season.
One pitcher/starter Dakota Hudson, was part of the "Young Arms" brought up from Cardinals affiliate, Memphis Triple-A Redbirds.
He was placed in the Cardinals bullpen. A new role to take on. In 2018,
In my opinion, there is a different mind-set between being trained as a starter versus relief. Starting, one has 'control' from the first pitch. Relief, as descriptive as the word is, either beginning a new inning - usually just one - or coming in with runners on. The latter presenting a new pressure if not accustom to being 'relief'. Some feel, "he's a pitcher, should be able to do both". I feel that is not entirely true, especially facing major league hitters. Just my opinion, but feel it can make a difference.
Even with that said, new to the relief role, Hudson was a solid piece for our Cardinals bullpen. He made his debut, July 28 with an impressive 1 IP/2 SO against the Chicago Cubs at Busch Stadium. His second outing, facing the Colorado Rockies at home, he earned his first win. Out of the bullpen last season he acclimated well as he was 4-1/2.63 ERA in 27.1 IP. But, held a 18-19/BB-SO ratio along with a 1.354 WHIP.
First time hitters against him - 97 AB/19 Hits/14 RBI/18 BB/19 SO, however still held opposing hitters to a .197 BA. Second, third, fourth time facing Hudson, they were 0.00 across the board.
HUDSON TO MAKE HIS DEBUT START - TRIPLE-FOLD
Cardinals rookie Dakota Huston makes his triple debut tonight facing the Milwaukee Brewers ~ as a starter, part of the Opening Day roster and at Miller Park.
He earned his just due in Spring Camp - a spot in the rotation over four others in competition. He was the final choice by Shildt to fill the five-man rotation. But, placed as the Cardinals #3 starter.
When Spring camp closed, he 1-0/21.2 IP/1.25 ERA with a 6-20/BB-SO and a 0.97 WHIP. He was named Cardinals fifth starter the day before their last Spring exhibition game.
Overall out of the bullpen last season, he did see a 2-1/5.54 ERA in away games. Even though, at night he was 4-1/3.27 ERA.
Now, he will 'begin the game'. He will have control from pitch one. Hudson 'has it between the ears' and I feel he will turn in a solid performance. He faced the Brewers three outings last season - 3.1 IP/2 Hits/2 BB/2 SO for a 0.00 ERA and holding them to a .200 BA.