The last time Tim Hudson faced the New York Mets, his season ended in devastating fashion.
Now, he’s looking to keep the San Francisco Giants rolling.
Hudson attempts to extend his scoreless streak and help the Giants to their eighth win in nine home games Saturday night against the Mets.
Hudson (6-2, 1.75 ERA) has 17 career wins against New York – his highest total against any opponent – but the most recent one proved costly.
The right-hander allowed two runs and four hits with nine strikeouts in 7 2-3 innings of an 8-2 win July 24 pitching for Atlanta, but he suffered a fractured right ankle when Eric Young stepped on it during a play at first.
While the 38-year-old Hudson’s career was potentially in jeopardy, he signed a two-year, free-agent contract with the Giants and has helped turned their staff into one of the best in baseball.
San Francisco (40-21) ranks third in the majors with a 3.04 ERA after compiling a 4.00 mark while finishing with a losing record last year.
Hudson owns the lowest ERA in the majors, and his 0.87 WHIP is second behind Cincinnati’s Johnny Cueto (0.79).
Hudson has been dominant while winning his last two starts, throwing 14 scoreless innings. He yielded three hits in seven innings of an 8-0 win at St. Louis, the reigning NL champion.
"Nothing fancy, he just goes out there and pitches to contact, like he always does," catcher Buster Posey said. "He’s smart and he knows how to attack the hitters."
He’ll try to do that to the Mets (28-33) again after the Giants opened this three-game series with a 4-2 victory Friday.
New York is batting .217 with an average of 2.8 runs during a four-game slide and totaled four hits against the Giants.
"I have all the confidence in the offense we have here. They’re going to put up runs," said Jonathon Niese, who allowed two runs in seven innings but didn’t get a decision Friday.
The offense may not need to do much in supporting Bartolo Colon (5-5, 4.52).
The 41-year-old right-hander has won three straight starts behind a 1.61 ERA, a tremendous improvement after posting a 5.84 ERA through his first eight.
Colon’s turnaround continued Monday, when he allowed two runs in seven innings of an 11-2 win at Philadelphia.
"He knows when he has to put a little something on it," manager Terry Collins said. "He’s the master of taking stuff, taking speed off the ball, getting it to sink, getting it to move. When he needs it, there’s still plenty there."
Colon is facing the Giants for the first time since allowing two runs with seven strikeouts in five innings of a 6-2 road win with Oakland on May 20, 2012.
He’ll have to contend with Posey, who is 9 for 22 (.409) with four RBIs in five games after going 3 for 32 over the previous nine. The All-Star catcher had three hits Friday, including a two-run homer – the first time he went deep since May 3 – that put San Francisco ahead for good in the eighth inning.
"He’s a talented hitter," manager Bruce Bochy said. "We all have our ups and downs. We talk about that all the time."
Posey has a .452 average in 11 career home meetings with the Mets.
New York is still without Young, who is on the DL with a strained right hamstring.