After much anticipation, trepidation, and just plain impatience from the Dodgers Nation, Rich Hill‘s infamous blister finally healed, and he took the mound tonight at Chavez Ravine. It was a heck of a request to ask Hill to make his Dodgers debut by facing the Giants in this tough NL West battle. Things could go either way – and rather quickly. But then again, that’s the way it’s been for the Dodgers pitching staff all season.
It was a decent enough first inning for Rich Hill. He gave up two singles, and flashed an impressive southpaw curveball.
After two innings, the game was scoreless, and shaping up to be a pitching battle.
The Giants had four hits after three innings, but no runs. Hill was making it look – if not easy – fairly unstressful.
Adrian Gonzalez followed that with a single to advance his hitting streak.
5th inning 1-0
1,2,3 outs for Hill. Another scoreless inning.
6th inning 1-0
The Giants hit a couple of deep fly balls, but they were caught, and another goose egg went up on the scoreboard.
8th inning 1-0
Joe Blanton in.
With two out, and Giants runners on the corners, manager Dave Roberts had a decision to make.
Would he stay with Blanton to face the left-handed batting Brandon Crawford? Or would he go with the young Grant Dayton?
The skipper stayed with Blanton. Crawford hit one deep, and it was caught at the wall by the Traded Flop to end the threat. Whew!
Dodgers Win! 1-0
Just like mama said, some things are worth waiting for: That was an impressive debut from Rich Hill. He used his fastball sparingly, mostly relying on sliders, big curveballs, and sidearm-snapped breaking balls. He was chillingly effective, and owned the Giants.
Per Vin Scully: At the halfway point, Hill dropped in 17 of his first 20 pitches for strikes.
Once again, a Dodgers starting pitcher who wasn’t showing signs of distress – was pulled from the game. Hill seemingly could have gone one more inning. He had mastered the Giants’ hitters, and the bullpen was used for four innings last night. Alas, after six innings, Hill was done.
Butter and eggs keep on churning:Adrian Gonzalez at 17 game hitting streak (Corey Seager’s ended tonight when he went 0 for 4).
The Dodgers stand tall over the second place Giants by 3 games. This loss also drops the Giants behind the Cardinals in the wildcard race. Hehe
Rich Hill went 6 innings with 5 hits, 0 runs, 0 walks, 3 Ks. 81 pitches, 63 strikes.
Home Run: Justin Turner
Team with RISP: 0 for 1