Saturday, March 01, 2008
Feeling For Him
Knowing you have the talent, the composure, the wherewithal to be a Quality Major Leaguer--and not be able to extend yourself to the fullest--has got to be mighty frustrating. When Sohna and I were in Viera, Florida over the past 10 days attending Our Washington Nationals Spring Training--a concern entered my mind when first reported that Shawn Hill would be given an extra days rest between throwing sessions. Was Our Team just being cautious, or rightly concerned? This issue over a quality pitcher that has never been able to get past his constant pain. Physical Damage that is hampering his career.
After Our Number 41's last live batting practice session--everything supposedly went well. Shawn Hill was on top of each and every hitter early in camp that day. Even Our General Manager Jim Bowden expressed his delight. Unfortunately, seeing is not always believing--or the truth. Because now Our Washington Nationals are sending Our Most Promising Veteran Starter to Durham, North Carolina for an additional check up at Duke University. Soreness in Hill's right forearm again--coming after Tommy John Surgery (three years ago) & Radial Nerve Damage Elbow Repair (this past winter)--is a big worry. So much so, you have to feel sorry for the guy.
Between Shawn Hill and Alex Escobar--could any two--more talented players have their livelihoods taken away in such a painful and public way? When YOU KNOW you belong in The Big Leagues. When YOU KNOW you can be an above average player. And, when YOU KNOW every scout in the game feels the same way about you--it has got to be very frustrating.
Just last week, Shawn Hill told Sohna and I that he has a 15 Year Window remaining as a Professional Player. Not only does he remain optimistic--and rightfully so--but, more importantly, Shawn's not giving up. Whether this year is lost or not, neither should Our Washington Nationals wash their hands on Our Number 41. No--resigning yourself to defeat is never an option here.
Fortunately-youth is still on Shawn Hill's side. No one doubts his exceptional talents. Hopefully--one day soon--his physical dexterity and makeup will finally pull together and allow him to reach his destiny--as a Quality Major League Pitcher.
Until that day comes, I can only feel for this Young Canadian.
Because Shawn Hill deserves far better than what The Baseball Gods have so stingily given him--which is not a whole lot--thus far.