FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Clay Buchholz's last start came last June, and he missed the entire second half of the season after being diagnosed with a lower back stress fracture.
But Buchholz, who reported to spring training Tuesday, is fully healthy and eager to put the 2011 season behind him.
"I feel pretty good,'' said Buchholz. "I started a little bit earlier this offseason than I usually do, just for the simple fact that I wanted to make sure everything came together okay. I'm probably about eight or nine bullpens in and haven't had any problems, so I feel good.''
Buchholz spent the offseason working out at API in Arizona, joining teammate Dustin Pedroia.
"It's come together,'' he said. "I haven't had any issues with it. It's been good so far.''
After the Red Sox failed to reach the postseason, Buchholz reported to the Instructional League and made three starts there, giving him some peace of mind during the winter.
"It was definitely a good thing for me to come down here,'' he said, "and know that, going into the offseason, I wasn't injured anymore and I was able to throw without any pain.''
Now that he's healthy, Buchholz is intent on making 30-plus starts.
"I think it's big,'' he said of the significance of maintaining that workload. "It's what I want to do every time i come into spring training. It what's I prepare myself to do."