Brewers GM Matt Arnold has made his first transaction of 2024, completing a trade with the Dodgers. The Brewers receive 26 year old LHP Bryan Hudson to add to the Crew's pitching depth.
Hudson, a former 3rd round pick out of high school back in 2015, was designated for assignment by the Dodgers back on December 27th. He made six appearances in the big leagues this past year, posting a 7.27 ERA in those games.
While his MLB numbers in a very small sample size aren't great, his numbers in Triple-A were much better. For Triple-A Oklahoma City, Hudson had a 2.43 ERA in 46 games, including eight starts, with 86 strikeouts in 55.2 IP, good for a 13.9 K/9.
In return, the Brewers are sending minor league LHP Justin Chambers and a PTBNL or cash to the Dodgers. Chambers was a 20th round pick of the Crew in the 2023 MLB Draft and the Brewers gave him a $547,500 signing bonus. Chambers was recovering from Tommy John surgery when he signed and has yet to accrue any minor league stats.
The Brewers 40 man roster now stands at 39.
How does Bryan Hudson fit with the Brewers?
While Hudson does have some starting experience in the minors, he is likely looking at a bullpen role in the big leagues with Milwaukee. As a tall, six-foot-eight lefty, he can be an imposing presence out of the pen where his stuff will play up. Per Baseball Savant, Hudson gets great extension down the mound, and at his size, that shortens the distance the hitter can see the baseball.
Even though his fastball velocity is nothing special, averaging 92 MPH, with how far he gets down the mound at his size, 92 MPH starts looking like 96-97 MPH to hitters. He also throws a cutter and a slider, and gets a ton of ground balls in addition to his high strikeout rate.
Hudson has two minor league options remaining, meaning the Brewers can move him up and down between Triple-A and the big leagues as needed. He's going to come into spring training competing for a bullpen job and will have every opportunity to prove himself in MIlwaukee.
Every year the Brewers bring in a couple of optionable relievers with intriguing characteristics that can fit a role in their bullpen. Trevor Megill and Elvis Peguero were ones last year that earned a lot of innings with their opportunities. The Brewers already brought in Taylor Clarke from the Royals and now Hudson joins the mix.
It takes a lot of relievers to get through a regular season and the Brewers continue to stock up on more that have minor league options. Milwaukee has needed a second lefty alongside Hoby Milner in their bullpen and there's a very real opportunity for Hudson to earn that role in spring training.