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2012 MLB Playoffs: Braves could skip Tim Hudson's final start

Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said the team could skip Tim Hudson's final start and start either Randall Delgado or Julio Teheran.

Steve Mitchell-US PRESSWIRE - Presswire

The Atlanta Braves could skip Tim Hudson on the regular season's final day to give the starter some extra rest for the playoffs, writes David O'Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

If the Braves are eliminated from NL East contention by that point, manager Fredi Gonzalez would likely opt to skip Hudson in the season finale against the Pittsburgh Pirates to give him rest for a potential NL Division Series Game 1 start. Kris Medlen will start the Wild Card game on Oct. 5, and a win would send the Braves to the NLDS, which Hudson would open. Gonzalez said one of his two left-handed starters, Paul Maholm or Mike Minor, would start Game 2.

So who would start in Hudson's place in the regular-season finale? Gonzalez hinted at using young starters Randall Delgado and Julio Teheran for multiple innings each. Both have been on the MLB team since rosters expanded but neither have been used out of the bullpen. Gonzalez also said Ben Sheets, who hasn't pitched since returning from the DL on Sept. 15, could also see some innings.

The Braves have clinched a postseason spot as at least one of the two Wild Card teams. They're 4 games behind the Washington Nationals in the NL East with 5 games to play.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.