Dodgers’ starting pitcher Rich Hill and catcher Russell Martin are closing in on a return to the team, according to multiple reports.
Hill is expected to pitch around six innings or 90 pitches at extended spring training on Monday before re-joining the rotation next weekend, according to Bill Plunkett of the OC Register.
The plan is for Hill to make his season debut at home on Sunday against the Pittsburgh Pirates, according to Ken Gurnick.
Rich Hill said he will drive to Chicago during today’s Dodgers game, fly Chicago to Phoenix , pitch an Extended Spring game at Camelback Ranch Monday morning, fly back to Chicago Monday when the Dodgers are off, remain with the club and start Sunday for the Dodgers at home.
— Ken Gurnick (@kengurnick) April 21, 2019
Hill has not made a start this season due to the MCL strain he suffered on March 17.
Ross Stripling will move to the bullpen when Hill is activated off the injured list.
Plunkett also said Martin will go through simulated situations on Friday instead of going on a rehab assignment. He could also be activated over the weekend if it goes well.
Martin originally landed on the injured list on April 10 with lower back inflammation. He is hitting .333/.500/.600 in 22 at-bats this season.
Russell Martin will go with team to Chicago. He’ll catch bullpens & then participate in simulated game on Friday in LA. No rehab assignment. He’ll be activated during Pittsburgh series this weekend in LA.
— Alanna Rizzo (@alannarizzo) April 21, 2019
Expect Rocky Gale to be optioned to AAA Oklahoma City to make room for Martin.