Prior to the Dodgers’ series opener against the Colorado Rockies, Rich Hill pitch to live hitters as he continued his progression towards a return to game action.
Just when it looked like Rich Hill’s time with the Dodgers may have come to an end, the determined pitcher is feverishly working his way back. Rich pitched to live batters on Friday afternoon and he is scheduled to pitch on Tuesday and Sunday of the final week of the regular season. Those two outings will come against the Padres and Giants.
Whether Hill starts those games or pitches out of the bullpen remains to be seen but at this point in the season, the Dodgers cannot expect many innings from Hill. If he starts it will be in an opener type role and if he comes out of the bullpen is unlikely that he can provide more than an inning or two of relief.
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According to Hill, the pain in his last outing in Baltimore stemmed from scar tissue breaking off in his knee. He is now pitching with a brace that prevents pain in his knee. If he is truly pitching pain-free we will never be able to tell given how Rich grunts after every pitch and always unleashes many profanities.
Hill will go into the final week of the regular season with his Dodger tenure possibly hanging in the balance. If he pitches well and makes the postseason roster then he will extend his Dodger tenure and possibly his career. If he struggles and cannot convince the Dodgers that he can be effective in the postseason then his Dodger tenure and even his career could be over.
Whether this ends up the final week we ever see Rich Hill in Dodger blue remains to be seen but if it is, then make sure to enjoy every moment of his outings. It has been an absolute joy to see Rich Hill pitch for the Dodgers and watch him live with every pitch he throws. If we are lucky then the legend of Rich Hill will live on for at least one more postseason.