The second person to know just how badly Atlanta Braves pitcher Tim Hudson was hurt Wednesday night in Citi Field was the Mets’ Eric Young Jr., who accidentally caused the injury in the first place.
Hudson broke his right ankle as he covered first base and collided with Young, who stepped squarely on Hudson’s foot rather than the bag. Hudson collapsed in pain and Young turned immediately to check on Hudson.
“I saw his foot as I’m going for the base right there in the middle, and as I came down, I knew I didn’t get any of the base. I knew I got all of his foot,” Young, still shaken after the game, said. “And I pretty much knew it was probably broke right when I did it, and that’s why I sprinted right back to him and tried to console him as much as I could.”
Hudson was taken off on a cart and will have surgery in Atlanta when swelling subsides.
“I’m bummed,” Young, who apologized to Hudson, said. “You never want to injure anybody.”
The injury came in the eighth inning of the Braves’ 8-2 victory, with Hudson giving up just four hits and striking out nine. (There is video of the injury, but be warned that it is very graphic.)
The Braves, with the largest division lead in baseball, have a ready replacement. Brandon Beachy, who had Tommy John surgery in June 2012, pitched six strong innings for Class AAA Gwinnett in what was expected to be his final rehab start Wednesday night.
Hudson, 38, is one of the game’s most respected pitchers and the reaction to his injury showed that. Mets third baseman David Wright had joined players who circled Hudson after the injury occurred.
“He’s one of the good guys in the game and to see him go down like that, and know something was wrong, it’s tough to watch,” Wright said. “You just wish him a speedy recovery.”
Bryce Harper of the Washington Nationals chipped in, too, via Twitter.
One of the best competitors in the game! Have so much respect for Tim Hudson! Hoping for a quick and speedy recovery! #PrayForHuddy
— Bryce Harper (@Bharper3407) July 25, 2013