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Rich Hill Says The Dodgers Have The Best Rotation In Baseball

LOS ANGELES, CA - OCTOBER 27: Pitcher Rich Hill #44 of the Los Angeles Dodgers pitches in the third inning during Game Four of the 2018 World Series against the Boston Red Sox at Dodger Stadium on October 27, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

The last time we heard publicly from Rich Hill – he was brutally honest. To a fault, Hill said there was some misunderstanding in the aftermath of being pulled from game four of the World Series with the Red Sox. Now, Hill is being complimentary. In fact, he’s being down right bullish.

It’s a great thing to hear – Rich Hill joined MLB Network radio – and he says the Dodgers have the best starting rotation in all of baseball.

Moreover, Hill was particularly favorable to pitching coach Rick Honeycutt. Here’s a quote from Hill’s segment, with the full audio available above.

I mean this is coming from an unbiased opinion, but it sounds like it’s being biased because of being with the Dodgers. But I feel like we have the best starting rotation in baseball. And it definitely speaks to Rick Honeycutt and his ability to communicate with each and every one of us; and give us the game planning and skill set that we need to go out and execute.

It makes sense – Honeycutt is excellent at what he does. Since 2006, he’s survived several regime changes and legions of different arms that cycle on and off the major league roster.

Furthermore, the reason for Honeycutt’s staying power is what Hill speaks towards. Equally important – when you combine a pitching coach like Honeycutt with a star-studded staff like the Dodgers will run out in 2019 – Hill’s words don’t seem unrealistic.

Currently the Dodgers are 7 to 1 odds to win the 2019 World Series. If asked to pinpoint a single reason ‘why’, the first thing I point towards is the depth of the starting rotation the Dodgers have at their disposal.

Rich Hill strikes me as a smart baseball player. We should all put plenty of weight in his words. Do you agree with Hill in his assessment of the Dodgers’ staff? Why or why not?

[button link=”https://www.dodgersnation.com/dodgers-prospect-news-alex-verdugo-receives-high-ranking-from-mlb-com/2019/01/25/” type=”big” color=”red”] Alex Verdugo listed in MLB.com Top-10 Outfield Prospects[/button]

Written by Clint Evans

Clint lives in Ohio, and played collegiate baseball. He loves the Dodgers due to his first memories of Chavez Ravine when he was nine years old. The voice of Vin Scully has been a staple in his life since he was a kid. No amount of baseball talk is ever enough, and he wishes the regular season was year round. He has written about baseball online since 2007.

10 Comments

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  1. “But I feel like we have the best starting rotation in baseball. And it definitely speaks to Rick Honeycutt and his ability to communicate with each and every one of us; and give us the game planning and skill set that we need to go out and execute.”

    Does Roberts know this, seeing as it’s been Roberts who’s pulled the starters who were doing well in the ’17 and ’18 WS?

  2. This will probably annoy some folks on here, sorry…….just remember, I love our team too……but I kinda agree with Mike on this one. We do have the best starting rotation in baseball………but we also have a manager who does not hesitate to pull them from games at the FIRST sign of trouble. He (Dave Roberts) forces us to turn to another guy in the bullpen who is not as accomplished as a pitcher, compared to the guy we started the game with. He (Dave Roberts) does it at the first sign of trouble a lot, it’s ignorant and annoying. Whenever it back fires on him, he always trots out some excuse, instead of owning that it was his mistake. I like Dave. But he’s doing a disservice to the team and the pitchers who start the games for us, when he does that. He needs to give the guys, even some of the relievers, a longer rope.

  3. I agree with the above comments made by SoCal and bluz. They are right on point. I am a big believer in Joe Torre’s maxim that a team can never have enough good pitching. And, yes, I would not mind adding someone like Kluber to our team. Frankly, Hill’s words were fine, but his blisters began to take their toll on me as the season unwrapped. If he were part of a deal for Realmuto, I would not mind!!!!! Go Blue!!!!

  4. I like Dave Roberts, but yeah, he makes too many mistakes by pulling the hot hand off the mound. I get the front office values analytics, but those only give probabilities. If Hill is mowing down batters and then gives up a walk or single, he’s still the better option. Of course, in game 4 of the WS, both Hill and Roberts could have done a better job communicating.

    As much as I love the Dodgers, however, I can’t say they are the best rotation until they can more regularly go, or be given the chance to go at least seven innings. I’m hoping a Kluber deal gets done; then I’d be convinced they could be in the best rotation discussion.

    • And it’s those similar analytics that platoon players obsessively putting hot bats on the bench just because of the handedness of a pitcher. But to be fair also these players that are platooned for the most part have shown a noticeable weakness at hitting a LHP or a RHP.

  5. Time will tell if Rich Hill’s boast is accurate. As of the two years he has been with LA, he is the weakest link in the starting rotation (check his innings pitched) and it’s not always Roberts’ fault for pulling Hill out of a game early.

  6. It’s the numbers. Dave pulls the left handed batter against the LHP because his numbers show that even though the new RH batter will also probably not get a hit or a walk (that’s the nature of hitting) the numbers show that in 100 opportunities this RHB will get on 8 times more than his LH batter. As I say, most times both batters will fail, but in our imagination we see the guy that was replaced getting a hit, and so it’s Dave’s fault.
    Same with pitching, except here, Dave is a big believer, like most managers now, that the third time thru the opposing lineup the likelihood of the batter getting on is greatly improved (+40%), even the second time through the batters success is up 15% and that scares Dave more than most managers. i.e. if it’s inning 5 with Hill and Story (Rockies) is up he’s pulling Hill for a RHP. But if it’s inning 5 and Marquesz is pitching against Belinger, Bud Black will not pull Marquez for his LH relief pitcher. I like Dave’s chances better than Bud’s.

    Blame “Moneyball,” the high priestess of today’s general managers.

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