Hill making an impression for next year
The Red Sox are in, what is for them, the rare position of being able to audition players for next year. Such is the case when postseason hopes consist of a mathematical miracle.
One veteran who could stick is lefty Rich Hill, the pride of Milton, Mass. Hill has looked good both times manager Terry Francona has called on him.
“Encouraging,” Francona said. “There’s a lot there to like. There’s some depiction. Probably some of the reason there’s deception is probably the reason he’s having trouble
commanding at times. So, this is kind of a free three weeks. I don’t’ mean
free, but you know what I’m saying. There’s a little bit of a — not extended look —
but more than we would have had if we just brought him to Spring Training. So
hopefully he’ll get chance with [pitching coach] John [Farrell] and get like a head start on where he’s at, where it could go, because consistency going to be big. Because there’s some
things I like. If you’re a left-handed hitter, it doesn’t look real comfortable.”
A starting pitcher before undergoing surgery last May, Francona thinks that Hill has the stuff to make the transition to lefty reliever.
“Well when you look at the delivery and the breaking ball you certainly think
that,” Francona said. “But again you have to throw strikes. We’ve been bringing in [Dustin] Richardson in some of those situations and when you walk somebody it doesn’t really help. And that’s probably a lot to ask with Richardson.”