Budde homered twice and MLB.com's No. 6 prospect Trevor Bauer allowed a run over 6 2/3 innings as the Triple-A Reno Aces beat the Omaha Storm Chasers, 13-1, in Game 1 of the Pacific Coast League Finals.
"I'm retiring at the end of the year and I've made that known," Budde said. "It would be great to go out a champion with these guys.
"It was huge to get Game 1 out of the way. They're on the ropes now, so they're going to come out strong. Hopefully they'll lay down and we can win it in three."
Should the D-backs affiliate take home the PCL crown, it will be Budde's first championship in his decade-long pro baseball career. His last title of any kind came back when he was a sophomore at Midwest City High School in Oklahoma. In football.
The team that has won the opening game of the Championship Series has won the title in each of the past seven years. (That winner will face the Governors' Cup winner from the International League in the Triple-A Baseball National Championship.)
That's a good omen for Budde and the Aces, who are looking for their first title since joining the league in 2009. The Storm Chasers, meanwhile, will need to rally if they hope to become the PCL's first repeat champion since the Sacramento River Cats achieved the feat in 2007-'08.
Selected by the Anaheim Angels in the 12th round of the 2001 Draft, Budde slugged a two-run homer to left field with one out in the second inning, and he added a solo blast down the third-base line to lead off the fourth.
"[Jake Odorizzi] threw me a couple heaters that I fouled back," said Budde, who appeared in 29 Major League games between 2007-'10. "I got the count to 3-2 and he threw me another heater middle-in. I hit it pretty darn good. I figured he was going to throw me another one. I definitely knew it was gone.
"The next at-bat, it got to the same situation. It was 3-2 and he threw me a breaking ball and I hit it off the foul pole. I thought it was going to hook foul. I was 100 percent sitting on the curveball. He wasn't tipping [his pitches]; I just guessed and guessed right."
The 33-year-old journeyman isn't exactly considered a home run threat when he steps into the batter's box. He homered once in 174 at-bats this season, and he has gone yard just 66 times in almost 3,000 Minor League at-bats over his 11-year career.
"I think it was back in Double-A in ," Budde said of his last multi-homer game. "I was playing in Little Rock, Arkansas. I think I hit two in Wichita, so it's been a while."
On Tuesday, Bauer struggled in the early stages, but he quickly found his bearings in the middle innings. He needed 22 pitches in the first after walking the bases loaded, and he threw another 25 in the second as a run scored on a single, two free passes and Irving Falu's RBI groundout.
But Bauer settled down after the shaky start, retiring 14 of the final 16 batters before turning things over to the bullpen with one out in the seventh.
"His first two innings, he was not very good," Oklahoma native Budde said. "He threw maybe 50-something pitches, but they only got one run even though they loaded. After the third inning, he settled down and got his groove and he was lights-out."
Reno first baseman Mike Jacobs homered, walked twice and scored three times, and right fielder Brent Clevlen was 3-for-5 with an RBI and a run scored. Left fielder Tyler Kuhn and designated hitter Ryan Strieby also homered in the victory.
Odorizzi (1-1) allowed nine runs, eight earned, on nine hits over 3 2/3 innings. MLB.com's No. 32 prospect -- and the third within the Royals' organization -- struck out three batters and issued one walk in the loss.