1. Sports
  2. /
  3. Rays

After Rays beat Dodgers’ shift, Rich Hill lets his frustration show in vocal on-field display

Cameras caught Hill launch a expletive-filled tirade after allowing a bunt single to Ji-Man Choi.
CHRIS URSO | Times Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Rich Hill (44) spins on the mound after delivering a pitch in the first inning against the Tampa Bay Rays Wednesday, May 22, 2019 in St. Petersburg.
Published May 23
Updated May 23

ST. PETERSBURG -- The Rays managed just five hits against Dodgers left-hander Rich Hill in Wednesday night's 8-1 Tampa Bay win, and two of those hits were singles through the shift to the left side.

And Hill didn’t like it, and he let it show, both during and after the game.

In the first inning, first baseman Ji-Man Choi dropped a bunt to the left side against a Dodgers shift that played three infielder to the right side and the fourth near the second base bag.

Watching Choi reach on the play didn’t make Hill happy, as he went into a expletive-laced tirade that can be found here. Fair warning: There’s a lot of cursing. The language is definitely NSFW.

Brandon Lowe, also being played to pull, singled to the left side off Hill later in the game.

Asked about Choi's bunt against the shift after the game, had less of a problem with Choi bunting than he did with his defense's alignment.

“In my opinion, I never enjoy seeing an entire part of an infield left open,” Hill said. “I think hitters are getting better at understanding how to beat the shift. No matter if you’re a power hitter or whatever you want to categorize your hitters in the top part, middle part or the end part of the lineup, guys are getting more savvy and understanding how to beat the shift. We have to make adjustments to that. I think we will moving forward.”

"It's one of those things, damned if you do, damned if you don't," Hill continued. "I love it when it works and hate it when it doesn't. It is one of those things where you get a little hesitant when you see and entire part of the field left open. For me, I prefer not to have that, but understanding that goes in is appreciated.

The Rays and the Dodgers are among the teams that most utilize the shift.

Contact Eduardo A. Encina at Follow @EddieInTheYard.


  1. The cover of the book Grassroots Baseball: Where Legends Begin Courtesy Jean Fruth
    The 224-page book features a chapter on Tampa, and an essay by Hall of Famer Wade Boggs.
  2. Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Blake Snell (4) delivers a pitch in the fourth inning against the Houston Astros in Game 5 of the American League Division Series on Oct. 10 in Houston. DIRK SHADD  |  Times
    Rays Tales: Team execs on Houston’s big problem, a base for winter acquisitions, trophy time and an upcoming owners meeting.
  3. Jameis Winston (3) points to fans after the Bucs' 2017 victory over the New Orleans Saints. Tampa Bay Times
    Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Previewing Bucs-Saints, justice for the Astros, answers for the Lightning.
  4. FILE - In this July 24, 2019, file photo, Houston Astros starting pitcher Justin Verlander throws to an Oakland Athletics batter during a baseball game in Houston. Verlander has been awarded his second AL Cy Young Award. MICHAEL WYKE  |  AP
    The Mets’ Jacob deGrom wins the NL award for the second straight year.
  5. Tampa Bay Rays manager Kevin Cash talks with reporters in the dugout the day after clinching a playoff spot. DIRK SHADD  |  Times
    Former Ray Rocco Baldelli wins top honors after his first season with the Twins, Aaron Boone was second.
  6. Erik Neander, Tampa Bay Rays senior vice president of baseball operations and general manager, addresses the media during a press conference at Tropicana Field Friday, Oct. 11, 2019 in St. Petersburg. DIRK SHADD  |  Tampa Bay Times
    Award came from a vote of team executives; Yankees Cashman was second.
  7. Flanked by his mother, Michelle Alonso, left, father Peter Alonso (blue shirt, standing), girlfriend Haley Walsh, right, and friends, New York Mets rookie first baseman Pete Alonso, 24, reacts as he finds out he has won the National League Rookie of the Year award on Monday at his home in Tampa.  Alonso, a Plant High graduate, made a grand entrance to the big leagues, hitting a major-league rookie and team-record 53 home runs for the Mets. DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD  |  Tampa Bay Times
    The easiest part of the day for the travel-weary first baseman may have been receiving the prestigious award.
  8. Tampa Bay Rays manager Kevin Cash speaks at a news conference before an Oct. 1 American League wild-card game practice in Oakland, Calif. JEFF CHIU  |  AP
    Marc Topkin: The Twins Rocco Baldelli and Yankees Aaron Boone are the other two finalists for the hard-to-define award.
  9. Tampa Bay Rays second baseman Brandon Lowe (8) is showered with sunflower seeds after hitting a solo homer in the fourth inning against the Houston Astros in Game 3 of the American League Division Series Monday, Oct. 7, 2019 in St. Petersburg. DIRK SHADD  |  Times
    Former Plant High and Florida star Pete Alonso a favorite for NL Rookie of the Year, to be announced Monday
  10. Erik Neander, Tampa Bay Rays senior vice president of baseball operations and general manager, says of the general manager meetings, which start this week, "We’d love to find a way to score a lot more runs without sacrificing run prevention.'' DIRK SHADD  |  Tampa Bay Times
    Rays Tales: Erik Neander says 2019 success provides “a stronger starting point” than they have had in a while. Plus, rumblings.