Braves-Padres Preview

At 34 and coming off a season in which he was limited to seven

starts following Tommy John surgery, Tim Hudson is optimistic he

can still be effective for the Atlanta Braves.

The right-hander showed the potential to do more than that in

his season debut.

Looking for their second straight win, the Braves close a

three-game series against the San Diego Padres on Thursday.

Hudson went 2-1 with a 3.61 ERA over seven starts last season

beginning in September. He showed little signs of any shoulder

problems Friday against San Francisco, giving up two runs and three

hits in seven innings of a 5-4, 13-inning loss.

“It was a really good outing for me, but I’m really disappointed

that I gave up two runs,” he told the Braves’ official Web site

after throwing 77 pitches. “It was one of those games where I felt

I could have gone deeper in the game with some more zeros.”

Hudson hopes to follow a stellar effort from 23-year-old Tommy

Hanson, who gave up one run and four hits in six innings of a 6-1

victory Wednesday as the Braves (4-4) responded to a 17-2 loss two

days earlier.

Troy Glaus hit a three-run homer in the seventh, and Martin

Prado ran his hitting streak to 12 games with a double in the

sixth.

Prado is hitting .469, and his 15 hits in the Braves’ first

eight games is a club record. Glaus, meanwhile, hit first his home

run since Sept. 28, 2008 when he played with St. Louis. He appeared

in only 14 games last season with the Cardinals because of right

shoulder surgery.

Glaus is hitting .267 with six RBIs, but was 1 for 9 in the

previous three games.

“He’s been getting his swings in the middle of the lineup,”

Braves catcher Brian McCann said. “When he hits, it’s big.”

San Diego (3-5), which recorded 19 hits in the series opener,

left 10 on base Wednesday and was 1 for 5 with runners in scoring

position while committing three errors. Chase Headley, who was

hitting .448, went 1 for 4 with three strikeouts.

The Padres haven’t faced Hudson since 2008, and he is 3-0 with a

4.29 ERA in six starts and one relief appearance against them over

his career. Adrian Gonzalez, who had two hits and drove in his

fifth run of the season Wednesday, is 6 for 12 with two homers in

his career off Hudson.

Mat Latos (0-0, 6.00) will try to rebound on the mound for the

Padres after struggling in his season debut Saturday. He allowed

four runs and seven hits – including three home runs – over six

innings of a 5-4, 14-inning win over Colorado.

The right-hander is 1-0 with a 1.29 ERA in two starts against

the Braves.