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Still more Shawn Hill: He speaks

Hill returned to the Nats clubhouse a while ago. He's going to be taking some different medicine, etc., and feels like he'll be playing catch again within a couple of days. But why am I telling you? You can hear it straight from him.

(Nationals Journal: We do more before 10 a.m. than most people do all day. And look for a Shawn Hill video profile from Jon Forsythe to pop up around noon or so. Also, read to the bottom if you're interested in today's lineup against the Dodgers.)

"The good news is the nerve checked out fine," Hill said. "The MRI, like we said before, checked out clear. It's just one of those we got to figure out how to get it under control. I start the medicine today and hopefully it'll calm it down. But nothing structurally wrong, so I should be able to move forward."

Do you have a timetable?: "They just want to shut me down for a couple days, but gear it right back up shortly. I'm not sure when I'll make a start, but I'm not going to be down too long."

What about playing catch?: "Probably a couple days."

Is it related to the nerve on which you had surgery?: "It's hard to tell. It might be, it might not be. I'm going to take some medicine, do some stretching and strengthening stuff that's related to it and see if there's improvement. We've got some other stuff that we're kind of working on as well, and try to get a feel of what works, what doesn't. Might get a better idea at that point, but we're going to try to attack it from a couple different angles."

If the elbow and the nerve are sound and you're convinced of that, do you think you can pitch through the pain and discomfort: "It got bad the last time I threw to the point where I couldn't do that for a full season. A short period of time, I can go through it. But if I can get it under control a little bit more, I got no problem. I pitched with discomfort in my elbow for six or seven years. I got no problem throwing through discomfort and pain. I just got to get to the point where it's tolerable, where I'm not going to change my mechanics like I did last year, where I might injure the elbow again. I just got to be able to throw the right way."

Do you think you'll be ready for Opening Day?: "It's too early to tell right now, but honestly if in a couple days I start gearing it up, and I feel all right and make the natural progression, I think I can be there."

You've had so many injuries, are you just like you can put this behind you or is it frustrating?: "To be perfectly honest, I've had kind of both emotions. Part of me is kind of saying, 'Uncle, What next?' Part of me is kind of pissed off, saying, 'whatever. I'm sick and tired of being shut down. I don't care how much it hurts, let's just pitch.' It's kind of both."

What kind of advice did you get on stretching and things like that?: "Some of the stuff is similar to what Patty went through last year. Same doctor. Certain nerve stretching, strengthening the forearm, but not just your standard doing wrist curls. A couple of little different things, stuff that the trainers have dealt with as well."

Today's afternoon game against the Dodgers is on MASN, and the whole gang -- Bob Carpenter, Don Sutton and Debbi Taylor -- is here. Tonight's nightcap from Vero Beach will be broadcast on 3WT, the last of a little run here for Charlie and Dave (though they'll return).

Afternoon lineup:

Guzman -- 6
Milledge -- 8
Zimmerman -- 5
Johnson -- DH
Kearns -- 9
Pena -- 7
B. Boone -- 4
Flores -- 2
Whitesell -- 3

By Barry Svrluga  |  March 4, 2008; 9:44 AM ET
 
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