Dodgers News: Reliever Daniel Hudson Torn ACL
Daniel Hudson, Nate Lucero
Dale Zanine/USA TODAY Sports

The Dodgers have been an injury-riddled team this season, but just about managed to hold on to the NL West lead. But things aren’t about to get easier for the side as injured players continue to grow. Their win over the Atlanta Braves on Friday came at the cost of veteran set-up man, Daniel Hudson. The right-hander succumbed to a torn ACL that could see him out for the remainder of the season.

Spectators, teammates, and coaches alike watched the injury happen in real-time when during the eighth inning, Hudson’s knee buckled under, as he attempted to react to Ronal Acuna Jr’s dribble.

Dave Roberts, the Dodgers manager, commented on the situation, describing the injury as a “clean tear of the ACL.”

Hudson is expected to be on the treatment table for around six to nine months, leaving the team without its best set-up reliever. The injured player has an ERA of 2.22 and five saves to his name.

Other Injuries in the Squad

Both fans and spectators know that the Dodgers have been having something of a peculiar season, despite their treatment room bursting at the seams. Whether it’s fans of baseball online betting in Ghana or walk-in spectators into the Dodgers’ home ground in the United States, the Dodgers have racked up a streak of performances that belie their injury woes.

In April, Blake Treinen was lost to a shoulder injury. His return is still uncertain, as the player only began playing catch earlier in June 2022. Former New York Yankees player, Tommy Kahnle, takes another spot on the 60-day injury list and is out with a forearm injury. Around the 11tg of June, Dodgers ace, Walker Buehler, went down with a right elbow flexor strain. At the time, he was on the six to eight-week injury list. A week after that, Mookie Betts, the side’s outfielder, was sent to the treatment table for a ribs injury after colliding with Cody Bellinger in the outfield.

The Dodgers held out hope for Andrew Heaney, making him their first capture of the previous off-season, despite a shaky start with the New York Yankees and the Los Angeles Angels. When Heaney took to the mound, he’d repaid their faith by giving up one earned run over 15.1 innings. However, Heaney didn’t stay healthy for long, and soon joined the 15-day injury list in June—his second visit to the injured list this season and latest performance following one start upon his return from injury.

The southpaw player dealt with discomfort in his left shoulder previously. But the injury returned, forcing him out of the squad after he experienced soreness during a bullpen throw. The coach called Heaney’s injury a shoulder strain that would see him miss out on several starts.

Hudson’s Injury: Career-Ending?

Hudson’s injury has ruled him out for the rest of the season, creating a huge deficit in the Dodgers line-up. At 35 years of age, and with only some months left on his contract, it’s not unlikely that the ACL injury is Hudson’s ticket to retirement.

However, Hudson is opposed to ending his career on the injury list and hopes to return to action in the coming season. In an interview, he describes the situation as “extremely frustrating,” stating that it’s “the first major injury that wasn’t my arm. I don’t know if that’s a good thing or a bad thing. But at this stage in my career, it’s kind of concerning, and it’s hard not to have bad thoughts. Hopefully, I can get through this and maybe give it another shot.”

Who Can Step Up for the Dodgers?

With no hope of Hudson returning within the season, the Dodgers will rely on Yency Almonte, Evan Phillips, and Brusdar Graterol to take on bigger roles for the MLB side. The coach has mentioned Phillips as a potential option following his development into a high-leverage role.

“I think that Evan has done a really, really nice job,” Roberts remarked during an interview in May. “I think our pitching departments have done a great job developing him. He’s got a mid-90s fastball, he’s got a slider that really plays to right, and he’s got a cutter now that he’s developed. Connor McGuinness really ran with that, so he’s a high-leverage guy, absolutely.”

The Dodgers could further improve their side with several internal relievers during the second half of the season. Treinen is expected to return in August 2022, with his shoulder injury behind him, as is Kahnle, who is in throwing rehab. Lefties Victor Gonzalez and Danny Duffy have also resumed throwing bullpen sessions, following elbow debridement surgery and flexor tendon surgery, and may return for the second half.