The Colorado Rockies have already liked St. Louis Cardinals starter Dakota Hudson for years now.
Two years ago (minus a week), Kevin Larson of Rox Pile examined a recent trade idea that was being bandied about that the time between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Colorado Rockies. The two clubs were discussing a trade for Nolan Arenado and, eventually, the Cardinals did get their man but in the 2019-2020 offseason, the two teams were discussing starting pitcher Dakota Hudson. The Rockies still should be considering him now.
Hudson, 27, has barely pitched in the last two years as he was out with Tommy John surgery, which he had at the end of September 2020. However, he is healthy again as he pitched in two games for the Cardinals at the end of the season.
Hudson was the Cardinals’ #4 prospect entering the 2019 season, which was just ahead of infielder Elehuris Montero, who the Rockies acquired from the Cardinals in the Arenado deal. He has a very good fastball with three average to above-average secondary pitches and a slightly below-average curveball.
For the Rockies, part of the reason why they were interested in him two years ago and why they are interested in him now is his very high groundball rate. The Rockies starting rotation has been good in recent years (and, particularly, at Coors Field) because high groundball rates. Since 2019 (minimum 300 innings pitched), the Rockies had three starters in the top 17 in groundball rates.
Among all pitchers with at least 200 innings pitched since 2019, Hudson’s groundball rate is third-highest at 57.2 percent.
Hudson is entering the first year of arbitration.