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Hudson Captures Second Gold Glove

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  • Hudson Captures Second Gold Glove

    Orlando Hudson won his second straight Rawlings Gold Glove Award on Friday, and he thinks he can get better.
    Hudson easily led National League second basemen with 833 totals chances and 510 assists. The next closest in total chances was the Phillies' Chase Utley with 799, and Utley was also second in assists with 424. Hudson committed 13 errors for a .984 fielding percentage.

    The 13 errors were a sore spot for Hudson.

    "I'm not going to give myself any excuse," he said when asked if the fact that he got to so many balls increased his error total. "I can name eight errors off the top of my head that were just lack of concentration, just got lackadaisical. Even though I had a lot of chances, it still was a lot of errors, and I want to at least cut that down by eight to 10."

    Hudson became the sixth infielder in Major League history to win a Gold Glove in each league, joining Bret Boone, J.T. Snow, Robin Ventura, Omar Vizquel and Matt Williams. He is also the second Arizona player to capture the award, joining Steve Finley, who garnered the honor in 1999 and 2000.

    "It's a great deal to win just one Gold Glove in your career," Hudson said. "I'm just blessed with God-given talent to play this game, and now I've got two Gold Gloves in two different leagues, and it's an honor."

    The D-backs acquired Hudson prior to the 2006 season as part of a deal with the Blue Jays that sent Troy Glaus to Toronto. It took Hudson a little time at the plate to adjust to the National League, as he hit just .237 in April and .233 in May. But once he got comfortable and learned the pitchers, he turned it on, hitting .304 in June and .315 after the All-Star break.

    "There's quite a few things [to get used to], and early this season, it was a little struggle," he said, "but I told myself I was going to get through it."

    Hudson set career highs in nearly every offensive category, including batting average (.287), runs (87), doubles (34), triples (9), homers (15) and RBIs (67).

    "I think Hudson's been our best player this year," D-backs GM Josh Byrnes said on the season's final day.

    Hudson left little doubt, though, when asked whether he enjoyed hitting a home run more than making a great defensive play.

    "Aw man, making defensive plays," he said. "Hitting home runs ain't my type of game. If I hit a few more home runs, it's a bonus. They do feel good when I hit one, though."

    Hudson credits his defensive prowess to the work he's put in with Brian Butterfield and Garth Iorg during his time in Toronto as well as his work with former D-backs bench coach (and former Major League infielder) Jay Bell.

    The soon-to-be 29-year-old Hudson works hard on agility drills during the offseason to improve his range.

    "I owe a lot to [Butterfield], and I got traded to Arizona and I was with Jay Bell, who played for Brian Butterfield, and he told me the same things and he also told me the way he did it," Hudson said. "I put those two guys together with my own way I like to play, and I feel very comfortable playing second base."

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