Nationals reliever Daniel Hudson went on paternity leave for the birth of his and his wife’s third child, causing him to miss Game 1 of the NLCS against the Cardinals. Fortunately for the Nationals, they did just fine without him, winning 2-0 as Sean Doolittle slammed the door in the ninth inning.
When news of Hudson’s absence hit, he received plenty of criticism from fans, both of the Nationals and those just following the playoffs. We’ve seen the criticism in the past as well, but it carried extra spice because it’s the postseason. One of Hudson’s critics is David Samson, the former president of the Marlins. Samson tweeted, “Unreal that Daniel Hudson is on paternity list and missing game 1 of #NLCS . Only excuse would be a problem with the birth or health of baby or mother. If all is well, he needs to get to St. Louis. Inexcusable. Will it matter?”
A former front office executive taking an anti-player stance? Quelle surprise.
Doolittle had a terrific response to Hudson’s critics. Per The Athletic’s Britt Ghiroli, Doolittle said, “If your reaction to someone having a baby is anything other than, ‘Congratulations, I hope everybody is healthy,’ you’re an asshole.”
Hudson also had a great response. He said, “My family is top priority for me. I heard somebody say one time, ‘Baseball’s what I do, it’s not who I am.’ And kind of once you have kids, or once I had kids, it really resonated with me.”
Hudson returned in Game 2, getting the final two outs of the game to secure the Nationals’ 3-1 win to put them up two games to none in the series, which continues on Monday night in Washington, D.C.