Buchholz suffers first loss of the season

Buchholz suffers first loss of the season
September 22, 2013, 12:30 am
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(AP Photo)

BOSTON – In what is likely to be his next-to-last start of the regular season, Clay Buchholz took his first loss, as the Red Sox dropped Saturday night’s game at Fenway Park, 4-2, to the Blue Jays.
 
Buchholz went six innings, giving up three runs, two earned, on six hits and two walks with two strikeouts. He threw 106 pitches, 64 for strikes. After missing more than three months with what was ultimately diagnosed as inflammation of the bursa sac, it was the most pitches Buchholz had thrown in a game since May 22 against the White Sox in Chicago, when he threw 113.
 
The Blue Jays got all the runs off Buchholz in the fourth inning, when they sent seven batters to the plate.  Jose Reyes led off with a single to right. But with Munenori Kawasaki batting, Reyes was thrown out trying to steal, one of three would-be base stealers catcher David Ross cut down in the game. After Kawasaki lined out to second baseman John McDonald, Buchholz gave up four straight hits – a single to Brett Lawrie, a double to Adam Lind, and singles to Moises Sierra and Rajai Davis. With Anthony Gose batting, Buchholz’s own error on an errant pick-off attempt at frist base allowed Sierra to score.
 
“He was pretty sharp,” said catcher David Ross. “I thought he pitched pretty well. We had that one inning get away from us that ball that Xander couldn’t get a good grip on. One tough 3-2 pitch to Lind that got him one and then Rajai threw that one out there that kind of blooped in. I thought he threw pretty well. The three runs doesn’t dictate how well he pitched tonight. I thought he threw that ball well. His pitches were sharp. I thought he had better fastball command and his sinker was really sinking. We talked a lot before the game and I think he found some mechanical issues, or some sharper things in the bullpen. The ball was really moving.
 
Manager John Farrell was satisfied with what he saw from Buchholz.
 
“I thought he was more crisp than his last time out against New York,” Farrell said. “Delivered better arm strength, little bit more consistent power to his fastball. I thought in the fourth inning defensively we probably contributed, including Clay’s errant pick-off attempt, to the three runs in that one inning. The infield base hit where [Xander Bogaerts] tried to set his feet, double pumped, and it was enough to [Brett] Lawrie to beat out an infield hit. Ball carried well to centerfield off of Lind’s bat for the other double that Lawrie scored on, and then the bloop base hit. I thought Clay was still pretty sharp and pretty crisp for the time that he was on the mound today.”
 
“I just held on to it little too long,” Buchholz said of the pick-off throw. “I was basically just trying to set up a way for [David Ross] to throw him out, so it was just a show move. I just held on to it a little too long.”
 
It was his third start since returning from the disabled list.
 
“Yea, he has and he was fighting to get back out there for the seventh tonight,” Farrell said. “But given the progression that we are on, I think that was a comfortable amount of pitches thrown tonight, but he still feels good physically, felt that he could continue on tonight. So, as far as Clay is concerned, the stuff he had, the endurance he showed, a positive night for him.”
 
“I told him I could go back out, if he wanted me too,” Buchholz said. “But it was like a 15-20 pitch from my last time out. But I felt as good in the sixth as I did in the first.
 
“The big situation where I just needed to make a pitch, I either missed bad or it was middle… it’s tough to survive like that.
 
“That’s part of the game, you win some, you lose some,” Buchholz said of taking his first loss. “The guys that have played behind me all year have found ways to come back, situations where I came out of the game, behind in the game [and they] found a way to come back in the game. We got a good group of guys and they never stop battling until the final out.”