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Hudson makes return to Fenway

Hudson makes return to Fenway

Tim Hudson is pitching the best baseball of his career. Where that gets him on Sunday in his return to Fenway Park, where the Red Sox throttled him as a member of the Oakland A's, remains to be seen.

With a 13-3 win over the Braves in the first game of a Saturday doubleheader, Boston became the Majors' highest-scoring team.

This wouldn't be Hudson's first turn against one of the league's best offenses. The Mets, Phillies and Marlins, all top 10 teams in runs, have managed just seven runs in 38 innings against the Braves' ace. That amounts to a barely-there 1.66 ERA.

But if this isn't a whole new ballgame, it is a whole new league. And a whole new ballpark: in Fenway, Hudson has a 7.92 career ERA, with 21 walks and 33 hits in 25 innings.

He has pitched his best this season. The Braves may need his best on Sunday.

Pitching matchup
ATL: RHP Tim Hudson (5-1, 1.77 ERA)
Hudson has been consistently stellar in the early going of 2007. Perhaps most impressive: his two home runs allowed in 66 innings were both solo shots. He will look to keep his stellar run going at Fenway's bandbox.

BOS: LHP Kason Gabbard (1-3, 3.51 ERA in 2006)
Gabbard had a 2.75 ERA in eight starts at Triple-A Pawtucket when he was called up to face Hudson. The Red Sox rotation has experienced some adjustments due to consecutive doubleheaders and a hand injury to starter Josh Beckett, which forced him to the disabled list.

Player to watch
Hudson has not pitched at Fenway since Interleague Play in 2005. Catcher Jason Varitek has a .684 slugging percentage in 19 at-bats against Hudson.

On the Internet
 MLB.TV
 Gameday Audio
•  Gameday
•  Official game notes

On television
• TBS

On radio
• WGST, 94.9 FM

Up next
• Monday: Off-day
• Tuesday: Mets (Jorge Sosa, 3-0, 2.25) at Braves (Kyle Davies, 1-2, 5.17), 7:35 p.m. ET
• Wednesday: Mets (Oliver Perez, 5-3, 2.90) at Braves (TBA), 7:35 p.m. ET

Alex McPhillips is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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