ATLANTA — Tim Hudson is making it easy to forget he missed most of the first month of the season recovering from back surgery.
The Braves jumped on Cincinnati's Johnny Cueto early Tuesday night and Hudson pitched seven strong innings to beat the Reds, 6-2.
Hudson (2-1) has allowed two runs or less in three of four starts since returning from surgery to repair a herniated disc.
"I'm feeling better each time out," Hudson said. "Every week that passes by I feel like I'm getting a little healthier. I'm really not concerned with it. I feel like I'm as healthy now as I have been in a really long time."
Hudson threw six scoreless innings before giving up two runs in the seventh. He allowed nine hits and two runs in seven innings.
Brian McCann homered in the second inning and the Braves scored four runs in the third and led, 6-0, after four innings.
"We got a nice lead early," the 36-year-old Hudson said. "It makes my job a lot easier. I can go out there and be a lot more aggressive in the zone. I can challenge guys a little more."
Cueto (4-1) led the major leagues with his 1.12 ERA before giving up six runs, five earned, on eight hits in four innings. He had allowed only one earned run over 23 innings in his last three starts.
Cueto said the loss is a painful reminder that dominant pitching is not automatic.
"It's part of the game. I'm not a robot!" a smiling Cueto said through interpreter Tomas Vera.