VIERA, Fla. (AP) -Washington Nationals pitcher Shawn Hill does not need another operation to relieve tightness in his right forearm.
Hill traveled to Duke Medical Center on Monday for a second opinion after receiving negative results from an MRI exam Friday. The 26-year-old right-hander had surgery on his right forearm, right elbow and left shoulder in November.
``It was good news in a sense that the nerve checked out fine; the MRI was clear,'' Hill said Tuesday. ``We just have to figure out how to get it under control.''
Hill's status for the season opener remains in doubt as he begins taking new medication and undergoes strengthening exercises, Nationals manager Manny Acta said.
``I don't want to be too quick pulling the trigger, but this right now doesn't put him on schedule to be ready on opening day,'' Acta said. ``If you're going to shut him down, then he's going to start all over with a throwing program, and then build up a little bit.''
Coming into spring training, Hill was battling for the top spot in the starting rotation. He made 16 starts for Washington last season, finishing 4-5 with a 3.42 ERA.
Hill missed the entire 2005 season after elbow ligament-replacement surgery. He has made just 25 major league starts since 2004.
Hill said he hopes to be ready to start the season, but said it's too early to tell.
``I've had discomfort in my elbow for six or seven years,'' Hill said. ``So I've got now problem throwing through discomfort or pain.''

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