By Matt Snyder
Red Sox left handed reliever Rich Hill appeared to be in pain when he grabbed his left elbow after a pitch Wednesday afternoon. He consulted with team trainers and was immediately removed from the game.
This could be a pretty big blow for both the Red Sox and Hill, though he may emerge with just a minor injury. Reports from the locker room after the game say Hill has a forearm injury. He is on his way to getting an MRI, but teammate Daniel Bard told reporters Hill passed initial ulnar-collateral ligament tests (Boston Herald on Twitter) -- which, if torn, if what requires Tommy John surgery.
Hill had been bouncing around the past few years after failing to stick as a quality starting pitcher. He seemed to have found a niche in the Red Sox bullpen, as he entered Wednesday having not allowed a single run in 14 appearances for the Red Sox dating back to last season. He's been tough on both righties and lefties, and was quickly becoming a significant cog in the bullpen. He is the only left-hander currently on the big-league club.
The scary news initially was that Hill reportedly threw seven straight curveballs to Adam Dunn before clutching his elbow (WEEI.com). That is certainly a bad sign given how curve balls create torque on the elbow, but if the initial reports are true, he simply dodged a bullet.
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