WASHINGTON, D.C. — It probably goes without saying that Dodgers aren’t looking for starting pitcher Rich Hill to pace himself tonight. Lose the game, and their season is over.
Still, that’s been the approach with the 36-year-old left-hander since the day he became a Dodger at the August trade deadline. A blister on Hill’s left index finger limited him to six regular season starts, plus another in Game 2 of the National League Division Series. Hill never threw more than 93 pitches in a single outing.
That approach changes tonight.
“Give us all you have for as long as you have,” is how Roberts described it.
It’s difficult to say what to expect from Hill. Not only is the blister still a concern, he’s only started one game on three days’ rest in his career — and that was back in 2009.
Rookie left-hander Julio Urias hasn’t thrown in the series, and Roberts said “there is a good possibility you’ll see Julio tonight.”
So why isn’t Urias starting this game?
“Rich has not pitched out of the ‘pen for a long time,” Roberts said, “and to give him the best opportunity to have success, to go through his routine, that kind of won out for us.”