Diamondbacks second baseman Aaron Hill hasn’t started a game since taking a pitch off his left hand Tuesday night. But that will change this afternoon.
According to MLB.com’s Jesse Sanchez, Hill is back in the Arizona starting lineup for Sunday’s series finale with the Dodgers. He’s batting third, behind Martin Prado and right in front of Miguel Montero. Cody Ross, who hasn’t appeared in a game because of a calf injury, will play right field and bat seventh vs. Los Angeles starter Josh Beckett.
Hill boasts a .314/.415/.571 batting line, two home runs and six RBI in 10 games played this season.
He hit .302/.360/.522 with 26 homers and 85 RBI in 156 games played last year.
Last night’s Angels-Astros game was a long affair with a bunch of homers and the use of 11 pitchers in all. The Angels used six pitchers and all of that business led to plenty of conferences. Six, in fact, which is their allotment under the new rule capping mound visits. As far as I can tell, that makes the Angels the first team to use up all of their mound visits since the advent of the rule.
Sadly, they did not try to go for a seventh, thereby testing the currently unknown limits of the rule. Umpires have been instructed to not allow additional mound visits, but they cannot issue balls or tackle anyone or anything to enforce it. Presumably, if Maldonado had walked out to talk to Cam Bedrosian about the weather or where he was going to dinner after the game, the home plate umpire would’ve simply done the old Robin Williams English policeman’s bit of yelling “Stop! . . . or I shall yell ‘Stop!’ again!” Maybe a fine would issue later, but we’ll never know.
At least until someone breaks the limit. And we know someone will, right? We should have a betting pool on who does it.