LOS ANGELES (AP) — Rich Hill endured a rocky spring, struggling with command and not exactly sailing smoothly into the first season of a $48 million, three-year contract.
He said he wasn’t worried. Seems he was right.
Hill pitched five innings of two-hit ball, Yasiel Puig hit his first home run of the season and the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the San Diego Padres 3-1 on Wednesday night.
Hill (1-0) struck out five, walked three and allowed Hunter Renfroe’s homer in his first start since returning to the Dodgers on a free agent deal. Hill said throughout the spring that despite his struggles, he was confident he’d be on track by the start of the season.
“I only threw 75 pitches and I made one mistake on the home run, but it’s early, and I felt good tonight,” Hill said. “I made some mechanical adjustments, and I feel good about it.”
Relievers Sergio Romo, Alex Wood and Kenley Jansen shut the Padres down the rest of the way, and Jansen pitched the ninth inning for his first save of the season.
The left-handed Hill was hit by a pitch in his right hand while batting in the second inning. After a short delay, he remained in the game.
“He said he’s fine, but we’re going to take a few pictures to make sure,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “When we got out to check on him, the first thing he said was that his on-base percentage was 1.000.”
Trevor Cahill (0-1) allowed three runs over 5 2/3 innings in his first start with San…
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