Catching Up With Rich Hill
Following a combined five rehab appearances with Single-A Greenville and High-A Salem, left-handed reliever Rich Hill has joined Pawtucket’s roster as he rehabs from Tommy John Surgery. The Milton, Ma. native made his 2012 PawSox debut on Saturday against Durham (Tampa Bay) where he allowed one run (a homer) in one inning of work.
“The rehab process has been going well,” Rich told me. “The ball is coming out of my hand the way I want it to, and all the work I put in this off-season is starting to pay off.”
Hill had a busy off-season rehabbing from his June 9th surgery. “I was in the gym everyday of the week except for Sundays,” he said. “[Three days a week] I was working on my shoulder program and throwing, [four days a week] I was at the gym lifting and conditioning.”
The lefty stated that at this stage of his rehab, he can do everything he did before. “[The surgery] hasn’t changed anything, really. I just think that it’s about your approach, the way you go about your business, the way you take the ball when you are given it.”
“You have to stay aggressive, you have to stay on the attack,” Hill continued. “You have to pitch with conviction. All the work you put into getting back is all for nothing if you don’t go out there and let it come out of your hand the way you want every time.”
Aside from facing more advanced hitters in Triple-A, Hills rehab process has changed from the standpoint that he is no longer starting, but coming out of the bullpen. “It’s a different environment when you come in as a starter,” he told me. “You come in, you pitch your one or two innings, and you’re done.”
“Here, you come in with a score on the board, in a certain situation, and that gets the adrenaline going even more so than before.”
Rich will be in uniform tonight and, although the tarp is still on the field here at McCoy, the rain has stopped and we should be good-to-go for a 5:05 p.m. doubleheader against Durham. Justin Germano starts Game 1, followed by Aaron Cook in Game 2. We’ll be on-air with the pre-game show at 4:45.
Talk with you then,