By Maureen Mullen
CSNNE.com Follow @maureenamullen
BOSTON Right-hander Clay Buchholz was placed on the 15-day disabled list Sunday afternoon because of a lower back strain. Buchholz left his last start, Thursday in Tampa Bay, after five innings because of the injury.
No setbacks, said manager Terry Francona when asked in Buchholz' injury had worsened. We were trying to shoot for Buchholz making his next start on June 25 and then the more we thought about it, we felt, 'Okay, if we back him up one more Saturday, itll cost him basically a week. We got a chance to get him healthy for the rest of the year.'
"I think he understood. Being the competitor that he is, he wanted to pitch. But I think its the right thing to do.
Buchholz, who is eligible to be activated July 2 against the Astros in Houston (the move was retroactive to Friday), concurred.
He noted that just recently he was given a couple of extra days between one start and the next one (because of the injury) . . . and it felt good for one start and then the lower back pain came back, he said. So, hopefully Ill miss a whole start right now and . . . it won't be anything thatll bother me for the rest of the season. I think thats the road were trying to take with this. Hopefully, we can knock it all out now and not worry about September, October.
While his back has bothered him occasionally, Buchholz doesnt believe he tried to push or rush back to the mound in his last start.
No. I just think thats the way it is, he said. Its a thing thats been lingering for a while, and now I need to attack it as far as getting in the training room and trying to do everything I can to try to be back on the field that Saturday in Houston. Time is going to be the biggest thing for it.
The only time I really felt anything throwing was those last couple of innings in Tampa. I felt like I was altering my delivery to sort of favor that side and I think thats the big thing for me. By doing that Im gonna end up hurting something else if we didn't take those measures.
"I think it was definitely the right decision. We sat down and talked about it, and get a little bit of rest here and then well have the All-Star break shortly after and hopefully itll knock it out.
Were trying for this not to happen in September and October, when everybody needs to be at their best, and try to get it done now and go from there.
In 14 starts this season, Buchholz has posted a record of 6-3 with a 3.48 ERA. He has not lost since April 26. In nine starts since then he's 5-0 with four no-decisions, a career-high stretch without a loss.
The move clears space on the roster for left-hander Andrew Miller, who was already scheduled to be called up Monday to start the first game of the three-game series against the Padres.
Maureen Mullen is on Twitter at http:twitter.commaureenamullen