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Join SI.com's James Quintong in a discussion of some of the latest news in football, baseball and other sports and how it relates to fantasy teams and leagues.
7/25/2007 02:58:00 PM

Tough-luck pitching

Tim Hudson
Tim Hudson was one out away from a complete-game shutout, but instead left with another no-decision.
Otto Greule Jr./Getty Images
What is the worse feeling when watching your starting pitcher take the mound: seeing him get pounded for 10 runs in three innings or watch him lose a chance at a victory with two outs in the ninth inning when the closer blows a save? It's a tough call, but after watching Tim Hudson's performance Tuesday night, you might swing to the latter.

Hudson was cruising through eight innings, shutting out the Giants, even striking out Barry Bonds in the process. He entered the ninth ready for his first complete game of the season and hopefully a shutout. Hudson walks the first two batters, got Bonds to pop out and then a second out, before losing the shutout on a Rich Aurilia single. In comes Bob Wickman to get the save, but instead, he gives up two more hits to tie the score at 4, denying Hudson his win. The Braves eventually won in 13, but that was inconsequential for many Hudson owners.

Even more painful is that Hudson was in a similar situation in April, as he struck out 12 Marlins over eight shutout innings, only to struggle in the ninth and have Wickman blow that one as well, with the winning run coming on a passed ball. Hudson would be charged with three runs, Wickman the fourth ---just like Tuesday's game. The only difference is that the Marlins would win 4-3.

Games like these show once again why wins are so fickle and why it's hard to make a mad dash for them at this point in the year.

If you're looking for a couple of more examples from just Tuesday's games of tough luck losers or no-decisions, check out C.C. Sabathia allowing just one run and five hits and striking out seven over seven innings, but getting outdueled by Daisuke Matsuzaka, who allowed no runs in seven innings. And Scott Kazmir struck out eight and allowed just three runs over 6 2/3 innings but his Devil Rays were held to just two hits and no runs by Daniel Cabrera and the Orioles staff.

At least in those above cases, you still got help in other categories like ERA, WHIP and strikeouts. It was also a bad Tuesday injury-wise for top pitchers:

-- Chris Young left his start after just two innings with an oblique injury, which is a tricky ailment for any pitcher. Hopefully it won't lead to a DL stint, but be careful.

-- However, Bartolo Colon was placed on the DL with a sore elbow after leaving Monday's start early. Colon has been miserable lately, going 0-4 with a 9.00 ERA in his last six starts, so his value just got even lower.

-- There were rumblings that Randy Johnson might not come back at all as he continues to deal with a back injury. It's hard to rely on the Big Unit down the stretch, so don't plan on him returning any time soon. Consider it a bonus if he does.

Other notes for Wednesday:
-- Craig Biggio celebrated his retirement announcement in style by hitting a grand slam. He may get a few more at-bats down the stretch on his farewell tour, especially with Hunter Pence injured.

-- Robinson Cano is among a number of Yankees hitters to improve during the second half, and one reason for that could be increased patience at the place. Cano set a career-high with three walks against the Royals on Tuesday.
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