With the decision, the Rays will remain on the hook for Hudson’s $5.5MM salary — less the $1MM that the Pirates sent with him. That means the Tampa Bay organization could have saved a fair bit more by simply cutting Dickerson loose — though they also added young infielder Tristan Gray in that exchange.
Hudson, 31, may have started out in the Rays’ plans but turned in a wild spring. He coughed up nine earned runs on eight hits and five walks over his 5 1/3 Grapefruit League innings.
That showing came on the heels of a middling 2017 season in which Hudson contributed 61 2/3 innings of 4.38 ERA ball while compiling 9.6 K/9 and 4.8 BB/9. Hudson still worked in the 95 to 96 mph range and carried a 12.1% swinging-strike rate, but obviously the Pirates were hoping for better results when they gave him a two-year guarantee.