3) Rich Hill is playing his way out of the 2024 plans for the San Diego Padres
A two-start sample might be too unfair to judge, but like Scott Barlow, Rich Hill has made a poor introduction to Padres fans. He allowed six runs in three innings in a loss to the Dodgers on Sunday Night Baseball, and more disappointingly, allowed three runs in 3.1 innings pitched in a loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks, a team they're chasing.
If his starts with the Padres were the only disappointing ones it'd be easier to point to the small sample size, but Hill has a 5.17 ERA in 24 starts this season. His ERA is the fifth highest in baseball among qualified starting pitchers. That's not great.
To make matters worse, he's 43 years old. His age makes him a really easy player to root for, but he could simply not have it anymore. I thought when the Padres acquired him, if Hill wanted to keep going, he'd be a solid option for a swingman type of role in 2024. Work out of the bullpen in long relief and act as a depth starter if the Padres need that.
Unfortunately, Hill is playing himself out of a role with this team. There's still time to turn it around, but a rough year all around, not just with San Diego, makes it unlikely the team pursues a reunion.