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Thursday, April 26, 2018

Clay Buchholz reportedly dealing with ‘physical issues’ in advance of World Series

Clay-Buchholz-Red-SoxBoston Red Sox pitcher Clay Buchholz is reportedly dealing with some discomfort as his team prepares to face the St. Louis Cardinals in the World Series. According to WEEI.com’s Rob Bradford, a source suggested the right-hander is working through some “physical issues” but is still expected to start in either Game 3 or Game 4.

Buchholz started Game 2 of the ALCS, but Red Sox manager John Farrell has decided to slide John Lackey in for Game 2 of the World Series. Farrell brushed any injury talk aside and said he simply didn’t want Lackey having too many days off between starts.

“Everything is OK [with Buchholz], we fully expect he and Jake to be pitching on the weekend in St. Louis,” Farrell said Tuesday. “[The decision was made based on] the way [Lackey] came out of his game over in Detroit, and not allowing too many days of rest to get away from that previous start of his. … That’s the primary reason to get John back in there in Game 2.”

Speculation began building about a potential injury on Tuesday, when left-hander Felix Doubront threw a simulated game under the watch of Farrell and Red Sox GM Ben Cherington. He then threw a side session with pitching coach Juan Nieves looking on. Doubront started 27 games for Boston during the regular season but has be relegated to a long relief role for the postseason.

If this were any other pitcher, Red Sox fans probably wouldn’t be concerned. Buchholz has a lengthy history of injuries and missed roughly half of the 2013 regular season with a shoulder/neck injury after going 9-0 with a 1.71 ERA to start the season. Having to insert Doubront into a starting role would be less than ideal for Boston.

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