Hudson undergoes ankle surgery, should be ready opening day
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) Giants right-hander Tim Hudson has undergone surgery to remove bone spurs from his right ankle, the same one he injured during the 2013 season with Atlanta that sidelined him for the final two months.
The expected recovery is eight weeks, and the defending World Series champions expect him to be ready by opening day.
Hudson hopes it's much sooner - sometime during spring training. Giants pitchers and catchers report to spring training Feb. 18, with the first workout a day later.
''Recovering well,'' Hudson said by text message Tuesday. ''I feel very confident about being ready in time for spring.''
San Francisco assistant general manager Bobby Evans said Tuesday that Hudson had the procedure Friday. The 39-year-old pitcher has said the 2015 season will likely be his final year playing. He signed a $23 million, two-year contract before last season, when he reached and won the first World Series of his 16-year career.
''Tim started experiencing increased discomfort as he was ramping up his offseason work outs and we decided it was best to take care of this now so he doesn't have to deal with this during the upcoming season,'' Evans said. ''We expect Tim to be ready to go opening day.''
Hudson started Game 7 of the World Series at Kansas City before Jeremy Affeldt and Madison Bumgarner took over to close out the team's third championship in five years.
While Hudson posted his first losing record this year at 9-13 with a 3.57 ERA, he provided a key veteran presence in the rotation, became an All-Star for the fourth time and returned from the serious ankle injury to make 31 starts over 189 1-3 innings.
Hudson, with 214 career wins, said in November during a charity event at Auburn that winning the World Series brings ''some solid closure to it.''
In 2013, Hudson was 8-7 with a 3.97 ERA in 21 starts for the Braves before getting hurt and undergoing surgery for a broken right ankle. Hudson's season ended on July 24 that year in New York when the Mets' Eric Young Jr. inadvertently stepped on the back of his lower right leg while Hudson covered first base.
Hudson will be part of a talented rotation featuring Bumgarner, Jake Peavy, Tim Lincecum and Matt Cain, who is working back from elbow surgery that cut short his 2014 season.