Dodgers: Rich Hill is Just Who the Dodgers Need Right Now
The Dodgers are facing the biggest must win they could have without being on the brink of elimination. Should the Dodgers fall down 3-1 in the series, they will be deader than Julius Caesar.
The Dodgers will enter game four knowing they are essentially playing in a must win game. If the Dodgers drop tonight’s game and fall into a 3-1 series deficit, it would take a miracle for the Dodgers to win three straight games with two of them being in Milwaukee. Although the offense was to blame last night, things will begin and end with Rich Hill tonight.
Rich Hill is the perfect guy to be on the hill for the Dodgers tonight. Not only does Rich Hill have an intensity about him on the mound, he brings energy that should ignite the Dodger Stadium crowd and give Kiké Hernandez less to complain about tonight. Rich Hill is also the type of pitcher that comes up big in the postseason.
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The past two playoff appearances for the Dodgers, Rich Hill has put up ERA’s of 3.46 and 2.55. The ERA doesn’t tell just how effective Hill was like his opponent’s average allowed. The last two postseasons Hill has given up an opponent’s average of just .203 and .224. Those are pretty elite numbers and a luxury for the Dodgers that this is their fourth playoff starter.
On top of Hill’s solid playoff history, he found his groove in the second half going 9-1 with a 3.03 ERA. He also held hitters to a .187 average in the second half of the season and baseball guru Chase Utley let Hill know that he was tipping pitches. Hill changed his delivery to put his hands over the top of his head in the windup and he will look to put his pitch tipping behind him.
In addition to Hill’s good postseason history is the fact that Hill will not be intimidated by the playoff intensity. While Rich’s last start in the NLDS wasn’t his best outing, he didn’t have any command which resulted in five walks. Hill will bounce back tonight, he is a guy that was out of the Major Leagues altogether in 2015 and pitching for the Long Island Ducks in an independent baseball league. Rich Hill has been through it all when it comes to professional baseball, there is no intimidating him on the mound.
As long as the Dodger offense can come to life against Gio Gonzalez tonight, we should be looking at a series that is all tied up at two games. Hill is no stranger to big playoff games and he is the perfect guy for the Dodgers to be sending out to the mound tonight.