Hudson given time off to help snap skid

Hudson given time off to snap skid

SAN DIEGO -- Orlando Hudson, mired in an 0-for-20 slump, was taken out of the Dodgers' lineup by manager Joe Torre on Saturday and might not play Sunday, either.

Torre started Juan Castro at second base in place of Hudson and moved Russell Martin into Hudson's second spot in the batting order ahead of Manny Ramirez.

"Last night, he looked like he was forcing it," Torre said. "I talked to him this morning, and he feels like he's letting people down. I told him, 'The way you play, you never have to apologize to anybody.'

"I may give him the next couple days, maybe. I'll take it a day at a time. He's just forcing it, bunting with two strikes. Just trying to do the right thing. We have Castro and Raffy [Furcal] is fine."

Hudson, who had an All-Star-caliber first half coming off a serious wrist injury, preceded his slump with a seven-game hitting streak. But since then, he's 7-for-49 with 13 strikeouts in 11 games, including three strikeouts in an 0-for-5 Friday night.

Overall, Hudson is hitting .289 with 48 runs scored and 41 RBIs in 78 games, equaling his RBI total for 107 games last year. Since May 27, when he was hitting .347, Hudson is batting .197.

Torre gave a slumping Martin back-to-back starts off last week, and Martin responded with two RBIs Friday night.

Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.