Shorebird of the Week – June 18, 2009

June 18, 2009 · Posted in Delmarva items, Delmarva Shorebirds, Sports 

He's got the shades, the leather, and the helmet, so Kyle Hudson was ready to play this one back in April against Lake County. Photo by Kim Corkran.
Kyle Hudson awaits the pitch along with Hagerstown catcher Derek Norris in an April contest.

It took a little time for his natural athletic ability to adjust to this level, but Shorebirds outfielder Kyle Hudson has become a staple in the offense and flashes some serious leather in left field at times.

One of the more prized draftees by the Orioles last season as a fourth-round selection, the two-sport star out of the University of Illinois is essentially making his pro debut with the Shorebirds. Kyle only played in 11 games at Aberdeen last season, collecting just 8 hits in 37 at-bats for an anemic .216 mark.

He’s blown through that number after a bit of a slow start, coming into tonight’s contest with Lake County with a .276 average in 56 games. Better still, Kyle’s shown a great idea of plate selection, walking 20 times compared to 39 strikeouts. (Compare that to a teamwide average of 2.7 strikeouts for each walk.) Hudson is also among the team leaders with 17 stolen bases in 23 attempts thus far.

Another asset Kyle has shown is consistency. He’s hit lefties and righties almost equally well and has kept his average in a pretty narrow range after the first few games of the season. That’s why he keeps getting placed in left field most nights, occasionally spelling Xavier Avery in center to give him a day off. It’s also why Kyle may be on the fast track up the Orioles ladder – at 22, he’s got plenty of time to develop a little bit of a power stroke. That may be the one knock against him, but we’ll see if he can start adding that to his offense as the season wears on.

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