After a fantastic start to the 2013 season, everything has fallen apart for Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Clay Buchholz. The right-hander struggled through a myriad of injuries down the stretch of the 2013 campaign (which, on the bright side, resulted in a World Series victory), and in 2014, the wheels have fallen off from a performance standpoint. As a result of that, Boston was forced to play Buchholz on the 15-day disabled list on Wednesday evening.
The Red Sox today placed RHP Clay Buchholz on the 15-day DL (retroactive to yesterday) due to a hyperextended left knee.
— Boston Red Sox (@RedSox) May 28, 2014
While Buchholz is almost certainly injured, there are rumblings that this stint on the disabled list could be performance-related, especially when you take a glance at his numbers for the season. In ten starts, Buchholz has thrown only 50 innings, and they have been brutal with a 7.02 ERA, 1.98 (!) WHIP and more than four walks per nine innings.
Everything came to a head with the 29-year-old on Monday afternoon against the Atlanta Braves, as Buchholz was only able to navigate three innings while allowing six earned runs and a startling eight walks. There were reports that he could be injured after that start, but with the official announcement coming on Wednesday, the Red Sox will have at least 15 days to evaluate Buchholz and chart the next step for a pitcher who posted a sub-2.00 ERA just last season.
It hasn’t exactly been a banner year for the Boston Red Sox, but after three straight wins, optimism is beginning to surface and they’ll need a healthy Clay Buchholz in order to make their long-term goals a reality.