If I can keep it up all month, 31 days of positive posts! There's going to be enough negativity going around with the Cardinals not in the post-season.
Today is my last post on a rookie that made it with the big league club in 2018. He was a starter in the minors that quite a few people thought could be a good back of the rotation starter type, but weren't sure would be a front of the line starter. The Cardinals saw a need to put Dakota Hudson into their bullpen late in the season. It was still early enough that he could pitch in 26 games in the majors, finishing 2 of them. His 3.86 FIP was better than league average, but he out-pitched that to a 2.63 ERA over 27 1/3 innings. The best part was that he only allowed 19 hits in those 27 1/3 innings...while also striking out 19. However, Hudson will need to get a hold of his walks because he had a lot of them as well (18). By bWAR, he was worth 0.5 WAR in just 27 1/3 innings. Basically if he pitched like that all year long in the pen he'd be worth 1+ WAR, very nice for a reliever.
In the minors, Hudson was a ground ball master. That continued into his major league career by getting 60.8% ground balls - even higher than his typical 57-58% in the minors. That enabled him to strand 76.3% of base runners against him, keeping his ERA low.
My favorite stat was that he was solid in save situations. While he only finished 2 games, neither of the save opportunities, he had 11 holds in 11 save situations. His average leverage index was quite high pressure at nearly 1.5!
Positive October Day 25, in the books!