The Washington Times - March 5, 2009, 11:30AM

Here’s one for all you spring training optimists: Shawn Hill was scratched from his start today against the Tigers and will see Dr. James Andrews in Pensacola, Fla., tomorrow to examine soreness in his right arm.

Hill, of course, has a long and well-documented history of arm trouble, including forearm and elbow problems that caused him to miss much of the 2008 season. Manny Acta said Hill started experiencing pain two days ago after throwing a bullpen session. Hill was willing to throw today, Acta said, but the Nationals decided not to take a chance on him.


“We were so excited he came out fine (from his first start),” Acta said. “We’re still optimistic, but we’re prepared to move on.”

That, indeed, is the biggest difference between last season and this season. The Nationals have a pair of young arms in Jordan Zimmermann and Collin Balester, as well as former Blue Jays starter Gustavo Chacin, who will pitch in Hill’s place today.