Yesterday, Dutch star pitcher of the Fukuoka Softbank Hawks, Rick van den Hurk pitched his second game for the Ni-Gun team of the Hawks as part of his rehab.
Rick has been sidelined with signs of fatigue and little ailments since June. Ever since he has had several checkups at various hospitals. The Hakws clearly do not want to take a risk with their pitcher that signed a three year extension shortly after he was placed on the DL.
In his rehab game vs the Ni-Gun team of the Orix Buffaloes, Rick lasted five full innings in which he faced seventeen batters. Rick struck out six, walked none and gave up only three hits. His fastball topped 94 mph.
Despite the good outing, Rick did not earn the win as relief pitcher Terahara allowed two runs in the seventh that tied the game at three. Eventually, the Hawks scored three more runs in the bottom of the seventh, that gave the win to Terahara.
It is not clear when Rick’s next start will be and if it will still be at NI-Gun level or that he will be appointed to the NPB team again. But is is clear that he has made some good progress in the past week.