Found February 26, 2013 on
Boston Sports Then & Now:
Sox fans myself included, hope Clay Buchholz can show some consistency this year.
2013 did not start off great for Clay Buchholz pulling a hamstring on the first day of camp. Red Sox fans are familiar with hamstring injuries as Manny Ramirez over the years took some lengthy time off and even removed himself from a game because of a hamstring injury. Buchholz, who is now entering his sixth year with the Red Sox will be the number two starter. With Josh Beckett on the Dodgers, Buchholz will be slotted behind Jon Lester after what seems to be another opening day start for Lester, who both struggled last season.
Buchholz came onto the scene pitching a no hitter in 2007 which had Red Sox preparing for a big year for him in 2008. 2008 was no easy year for Clay as he struggled losing 9 games and spending much of his time in Pawtucket trying to retool his pitching. 2009 was much of the same although Buchholz looked much better but still split time between Pawtucket and Boston.
2010 was what Red Sox brass and fans thought would come of Buchholz as he won 17 games and had an ERA 2.33. 2011 was injury riddled making only 14 starts. 2012 was a bad year for all Red Sox pitching as his ERA was 4.56. Buchholz may never approach that ERA again of 2010 but keeping it under 3 earned runs would be huge for a Red Sox team that is trusting their starters to do well this year, with not much depth in AAA as some players are a year away like Allen Webster.
With John Farrell back in the fold as manager this season Buchholz is hoping he can recapture the magic of that 2010 season, which was John Farrell’s last year as pitching coach. Three pitching coaches in two years surely didn’t help Buchholz but now it is time he steps up. His favorite pitching coach is back and now is in charge of the whole team. Could this be the year Buchholz wins 20 games? If this is the year Buchholz needs to come out the gate firing. Last year he started off horrible and could never recover. He has great stuff is is finally moving up in the rotation. Being a number two starter gets you a lot of recognition with the likes of Cole Hammels and Zack Grienke. Buchholz can be that type of pitcher.
Buchholz has never pitched 200 innings in his career and I don’t expect that to change this year. He has been a bit injury prone and the Red Sox like to rest their pitchers. Injuries happen to all rotations over the course of the year and missing starts is something that is common for Clay.
Here are three predictions for Clay Buchholz this upcoming season.:
He will miss five starts due to injury.
His ERA will be better than Jon Lester’s.
He will not be second on the team in wins.
Buchholz winning 17 games like 2010 may be the key to the Red Sox getting one of those wild card spots in the American League, but for that to happen he needs to stay healthy. With John Farrell back, it is fair to expect a little more for Clay Buchholz this season.
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Follow Scott Levesque on Twitter at @scottlevesque.
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