Hill unlikely to be ready to start season

Hill unlikely to be ready to start season

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- Nationals manager Manny Acta said on Sunday he doubts right-hander Shawn Hill will be ready for Opening Day.

Hill had his first bullpen session in weeks on Saturday, and he didn't feel any tightness in his right forearm. He threw 25 pitches and was able to throw his fastball and changeup.

However, in order to be ready for the regular season, Hill must have another bullpen session, pitch batting practices and play in exhibition games. His next bullpen session is scheduled for Monday.

"It's going to be very tough [for Hill] to be ready for the first week of the season," Acta said. "The way it's lining up now, he has to throw a side session, throw a couple of live batting practices and throw innings here and there. I don't think there is enough time for that."

Bill Ladson is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.