The Los Angeles Dodgers on Friday placed left-handed pitcher Rich Hill on the 10-day disabled list with a blister on his left middle finger and recalled right-hander Josh Fields from Triple-A Oklahoma City. The move will be retroactive to April 6.
Hill picked up the win for the Dodgers on Wednesday, allowing one run on two hits in an even five innings and throwing 75 pitches in the club’s 3-1 win over San Diego. Hill’s turn in the rotation comes up next on Monday in the first game of the series against the Cubs on the road, but the addition of Fields suggests that Los Angeles will almost certainly turn to Alex Wood or Ross Stripling to start in place of Hill, and stay available as a starter for however long is needed.
What was initially expected to be a rotation loaded with seven or eight pitchers vying for slots in spring training doesn’t appear to be quite so deep at the moment.
Hill also missed time last year due to a blister and was on the disabled list from July 20 through August 24 with the exact same issue not long after being acquired from Oakland. In six starts with the Dodgers in 2016, the 37-year-old lefty posted a 3-2 record during the regular season, with a 1.83 ERA and 39 strikeouts. He also started one game in the NLCS against the Cubs. Ironically, Hill hasn’t thrown more than 111 innings in a single season since 2007 when he made 32 starts for the Cubs, recording an 11-8 record with a 3.92 ERA.
The 31-year-old Fields allowed nine runs in only 8-1/3 innings in nine Cactus League appearances prior to being optioned on March 28. Fields was originally acquired by the Dodgers on last August from the Astros in exchange for minor league infielder Yordan Alvarez and went 1-0 with a 2.79 ERA in 22 games with Los Angeles last year.
(Dai Sugiura furnished some information provided in this report)