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Tomahawk Chops: Tim Hudson starting opening day

Hudson, who is the Braves' longest-tenured pitcher, will be on the bump against the Phillies in 10 days.


The Braves begin the 2013 regular season in 10 days. I don't know about you, but I'm ready to get this damn thing started.

Late on Thursday, manager Fredi Gonzalez finally announced his starting rotation plans. As Gondeee projected a month ago, Tim Hudson will start against the Phillies on April 1.

Hudson will be followed by Paul Maholm and Kris Medlen. Then, for the fourth game of the season, Mike Minor will pitch against the Cubs. Depending on whether or not Hudson wants to pitch with an extra day of rest, Julio Teheran will pitch the fifth or sixth game of the season.

Hudson, Maholm, Medlen, Minor, Teheran.

Not bad. Not great.

As we've been saying throughout the spring, the only real question mark on the roster is the starting rotation. The lineup is going to score a lot of runs, and assuming the bullpen isn't torn apart by injuries, it will be one of the better groups in baseball.

The rotation could be a concern, though. Hudson will be 38 years old this summer. He's feeling the effects of a long career and saw his velocity dip in 2012. Medlen and Minor were phenomenal in the second half of last season; can they do it again for most of 2013? Maholm is a solid-yet-unspectacular option for the back-end. And even with his god-like Spring Training stats, we still have no clue what Teheran will do.

I'm not saying the group will be bad. As a matter of fact, I think they'll be pretty average. There is some reason for concern though, and it will be something to monitor throughout the year.

Veteran right-hander Tim Hudson earns third Opening Day start with Braves | News
Kris Medlen might have already established himself as the rotation's ace. But as the Braves approach what has the potential to be a memorable season, they have decided to give veteran Tim Hudson the honor of being their Opening Day starter.

Justin Upton's mammoth homer caps Tim Hudson's fine outing | News
Justin Upton belted a mammoth homer over the scoreboard to cap the scoring for the Braves as right-hander Tim Hudson logged six scoreless innings in a 4-3 win over the Nationals on Thursday night in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

Braves mulling over spots to fill in their bullpen | News
Gondeee touched on this yesterday, but I just don't buy a four-man race for the final spot. It's going to be Martinez.

Dan Uggla huge key for Braves - SweetSpot Blog - ESPN
Improved production from Uggla would be nice. And contrary to what Schoenfield writes, I don't think 30 home runs is a benchmark for his success in 2013.

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