Kansas City, Mo. At least someone in the Hudson family delivered.
Tim Hudson won his fifth consecutive decision, allowing two runs on five hits in seven innings to lead the Oakland Athletics over the Kansas City Royals 7-2 Monday night.
Back in Oakland, his wife Kim still had not delivered the couple's first child, which is due any day. Tim Hudson was glad he was the one who came through Monday.
"I was hoping that my wife would hold off until we got home," Hudson said. "I talked to her right after I came out of the game. Everything is about the same. I hope we don't have any delays in the airport so I can get home and we can get this show on the road."
Hudson (12-5) was the show Monday night. He cruised through the first six innings, giving up just two hits and allowing only two runners to reach second base.
He retired the side in order in the second, fourth, fifth and sixth innings, at one point setting down 12 straight batters.
Hudson ran his record to 5-0 with a 2.11 ERA in his last six starts, despite the fact that he didn't have his best stuff.
"It was a solid performance," Oakland manager Art Howe said. "He goes out there and battles from the very beginning. I think he was fighting to get his command in the first few innings. He wasn't quite as sharp as he became. Once he got settled in, he was fine."
The A's are 15-5 in July, baseball's best record this month, and 9-3 since the All-Star break. They're just five games behind Minnesota and Cleveland in the AL wild-card race.
"I have no thoughts," Howe said. "We just have to keep playing the way we're playing. It's a moot point if we don't keep winning."
Ron Gant hit his first homer for Oakland, a three-run drive in the second inning. Gant, acquired from Colorado on July 3, was a late substitute for left fielder Billy McMillon, scratched because of a sore right shoulder.
Chad Durbin (6-9) gave up six runs and seven hits in six innings.
"He made a real bad pitch to Gant, up in the strike zone," Kansas City manager Tony Muser said. "That was the killer. Oakland is a very difficult club for Chad, because they are very patient at the plate and put pressure on the pitcher to make quality pitches."
Durbin was less diplomatic.
"There was no need to look at it (go over the fence)," he said. "It's a pitch he's been hitting for 10 years. It was supposed to be an outside-corner fastball and it was in the middle and up."
Eric Chavez went 3-for-5, making him 9-for-15 with four doubles, two homers, nine RBIs and six runs scored in the four-game series.
Chavez hit an RBI single in the second, and Gant's ninth homer of the season made it 4-0.
Jason Giambi hit a third-inning double that scored brother Jeremy, who walked.
Rey Sanchez made it 5-1 with a sacrifice fly in the bottom half.
Ramon Hernandez hit a sacrifice fly in the sixth, and Miguel Tejada singled home a run in the seventh off Tony Cogan.
Jermaine Dye completed the scoring with a leadoff homer in the seventh.
Notes: This marked the 33rd time in 41 games that an Athletics starter has allowed three runs or fewer.