Dave Roberts may have to answer some questions about how he used Rich Hill in Game 4 of the World Series.
The Los Angeles Dodgers manager drew criticism for pulling Hill after 6 1/3 innings of one-hit ball against the Boston Red Sox. But according to Hill, Roberts also didn't tell the left-hander he was starting Game 4 until the morning of the game.
Appearing on "The Bradfo Sho" podcast, Hill told WEEI's Rob Bradford the Dodgers were mulling starting a relief pitcher in Game 4 before bringing in a traditional starter like Hill behind him.
"There is a rhythm, there is a flow to the game that the starting pitcher gets into," Hill told Bradford. "And I don’t know if the World Series is necessarily the time to actually … It was up in the air."
Hill appeared to catch himself before outright calling out his manager, but it sure sounds like he would have preferred more advance notice before his biggest start of the season.
"We’re not talking about the regular season. We’re talking about the World Series," Hill added. "It is funny because I think that is kind of the part you have to adjust as you get older. My wife and I have been all over the place playing. We’ve been to hell and back and we’re here, so really being affected by pitching or starting or whatever in the World Series is really a minuscule thing compared to many things that are going on."
So, why did Roberts keep Hill in the dark? According to Bradford, the Red Sox thought Roberts was employing some gamesmanship by waiting until the last minute, but in reality, he simply hadn't made up his mind about who was going to start Game 4.
The change in routine didn't seem to bother Hill, who allowed just one run in a brilliant outing. But Rodgers' move to take him out certainly backfired, as L.A.'s bullpen allowed eight runs over the next 2 2/3 innings in a deflating 9-6 loss.
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