LA lefty Hill frustrated, 'going to keep working'

March 9th, 2017
"You need to see results in Spring Training, you want to have good feelings going into the season," said Rich Hill. (AP)Morry Gash/AP

PHOENIX -- Those choice words you probably heard Wednesday afternoon were brought to you by Dodgers pitcher Rich Hill, who struggled through another spring start and didn't cut himself any slack.

Hill, who walked four and couldn't finish off the second inning, said he's had rough springs before. Of course, this is the first one since signing a $48 million contract, and expectations are high. Hill shares them, even in March.

"I put a lot of weight on it," he said of his Cactus League starts. "You need to see results in Spring Training, you want to have good feelings going into the season. The last time I mentioned it, not until the third [regular-season] outing last year did everything come together for me. I know I have to continuously stay at it and put in the work."

Hill walked four Brewers and was charged with three runs in 1 2/3 innings. Five days earlier, he allowed Kansas City four runs in 1 1/3 innings with two walks. He left this game with a 12.60 ERA and went to the bullpen for some extra throws.

How did those go?

"Still terrible," he said. "Going to keep working on it. I want to see some results and consistency of the ball coming out of my hand. Today I left some good fastballs up, that was good to feel that, now to get that consistency to angle it down."

Hill's biggest issue was curveball command and release point, compounded by a few calls from plate umpire Mike Winters that went against him on close pitches. Manager Dave Roberts said the club isn't panicking.

"His track record speaks for itself," Roberts said. "We're not too worried about it. I know he gets frustrated. I don't know if it's mechanical or mental, but he'll be fine."

Hill said he will hear about his outbursts from family members, and admitted he was mad at himself for getting mad at himself.

"Sure, it gets frustrating, because it's Spring Training, and why get frustrated?" he said. "Those are things you can't control. And controllables are something I preach about, and sometimes you get away from what you say. That part of it does become frustrating. Constantly are keeping yourself accountable."

Earlier in the day, threw a bullpen session two days after coming out of a start with left hip tightness. Roberts said Kazmir will throw in a back-field game before he returns to Cactus League competition.