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Hudson to miss Friday's start; Petit filling in

SAN FRANCISCO -- Right-hander Tim Hudson, the Giants' most consistent starter this season, has been scratched from his Friday assignment against the Marlins because of a strained left hip, manager Bruce Bochy said on Thursday.

Right-hander Yusmeiro Petit, who's accustomed to filling in as an emergency starter, will replace Hudson.

Bochy emphasized that the Giants do not plan to put Hudson on the disabled list and expressed confidence that Hudson will make his next scheduled start, on May 22 at Colorado.

Hudson also sounded optimistic, particularly since he's receiving aggressive treatment.

As Hudson said, "It's easier to put out a brush fire than a forest fire."

Hudson, 38, said that the discomfort initially struck him in the early innings of his most recent start, last Sunday at Los Angeles. He felt fine while he pitched, though Bochy was compelled to remove the 209-game winner after six innings -- his shortest outing of the season.

Hudson said that he felt more extreme soreness when he awoke on Monday morning, though his condition has improved gradually since then.

"It's better than what it was," Bochy said. "Could we push this if it were September? Probably."

Hudson, 4-2 with a 2.09 ERA in eight starts, might begin testing himself by playing catch on Saturday or Sunday. He hopes to throw off a bullpen mound on Tuesday in Denver, two days before his possible outing against the Rockies.

Petit, 2-1 with a 4.85 ERA, has performed mostly in relief but filled in on April 29 when Matt Cain cut his right index finger. Petit proceeded to work six shutout innings against San Diego in a 6-0 Giants victory. He didn't fare as well in his next start, yielding eight runs in 4 1/3 innings at Pittsburgh on May 5.

Chris Haft is a reporter for Read his blog, Haft-Baked Ideas, and follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat.
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