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Tag:Clay Buchholz
Posted on: May 23, 2011 5:42 pm
Edited on: May 23, 2011 6:08 pm
 

On Deck: Stars return



By C. Trent Rosecrans

Chase UtleyUTLEY'S BACK -- The Phillies have been searching for offense and hope that Chase Utley on a (hopefully) healthy knee can provide it. Over the last nine games, the Phillies have lost six and been outscored 25-15. They're batting just .171 with nine extra-base hits and haven't scored more than three runs in any of those games. Only four National League teams have scored fewer runs than the Phillies' 176 this season, while the team is below league average in batting average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage. Utley hit .281/.361/.438 in 32 at-bats at Class A Clearwater on his rehab assignment. Reds at Phillies, 7:05 p.m. ET (Watch live)

Josh HamiltonNelson CruzRangers RETURN -- While the Phillies are getting just one player back, the Rangers return the middle of their order with Josh Hamilton and Nelson Cruz coming off the disabled list. The Rangers lost three of their last four (including two to Philadelphia), while scoring just five runs in that span. Hamilton is back hitting third, and Cruz will be batting sixth. Texas was 9-1 before the April 12 game in Detroit where Hamilton broke a bone in his right arm on a headfirst slide at home. White Sox at Rangers, 8:05 p.m. ET (Watch live)

Justin MastersonFAMILIAR FACE -- The Indians got right-hander Justin Masterson from Boston in the Victor Martinez trade. While Martinez is back in the AL Central, Masterson is actualizing his vast potential and helping lead the Indians to the majors' best record. Masterson is 5-2 with a 2.52 ERA (and a 3.31 xFIP). Masterson has faced his former teammates twice since being traded, going 2-0 with a 0.64 ERA in two starts against the Red Sox. He faces Clay Buchholz, who has been fantastic in May, going 3-0 with a 1.40 ERA in four starts this month. Red Sox at Indians, 7:05 p.m. ET (Watch live)

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Posted on: May 13, 2011 6:24 pm
Edited on: May 13, 2011 7:14 pm
 

On Deck: Red Sox-Yankees battle


OD

By Evan Brunell

BEST MATCHUP: The first Red Sox-Yankees game in quite a while gets top billing, and it's a pretty decent matchup, too. Clay Buchholz, who has struggled against the Yankees in the past, will take the mound with a 4.19 ERA. Buchholz has struggled to retain the dominance that saw him post a sub-3.00 ERA last season, but he was pitching over his head anyways. He's fallen back to earth and needs to back off his reliance of pitching to contact to take a step forward. Meanwhile, ex-Red Sox pitcher Bartolo Colon, who left the team on a sour note when he refused to go to the bullpen in 2008, takes the mound with a rejuvenated right arm that had stem cells injected into it. Colon has an impressive 3.86 ERA after moving from the bullpen to replace Phil Hughes and will look to keep the good times rolling. Oh, and as the video above shows, David Ortiz is hoping the Yankees fans he hugged won't boo him during the weekend series. Red Sox at Yankees, 7:05 p.m. ET

VERLANDER-MEER? Justin Verlander will attempt to become the first pitcher since Johnny Vander Meer to throw consecutive no-hitters and will do so against a hot Kansas City team with Eric Hosmer fresh off two home runs in Yankee Stadium. Both team have 20 wins, with the Tigers adding an extra loss, so second place is at stake. Verlander will be opposed by Luke Hochevar, who still isn't delivering on his pedigree as a former No. 1 pick but is at the very least showing signs of progress and doesn't look like he'll flame out of baseball in a couple years anymore with a 4.91 mark. Royals at Tigers, 7:05 p.m. ET

FIRST AT STAKE:
 There's no love lost between the Cardinals and Reds, who meet for a pivotal three-game series this weekend. The Reds are 1 1/2 games behind St. Louis for first in the NL Central. Cincinnati has its work cut out for itself as the Cardinals have generally handled the Reds well over the last couple of years and are on a hot streak, winning five of the last seven games. Kyle Lohse, who has bounced back after a couple forgettable seasons after a strong contract year with St. Louis in 2008, will dance with Bronson Arroyo, who is continuing his impressive streak as a solid, durable pitcher. Cardinals at Reds, 7:10 p.m. ET

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Posted on: May 2, 2011 5:55 pm
 

On Deck: Ethier looks for 28

Andre Ethier
By C. Trent Rosecrans

Streaking -- Los Angeles' Andre Ethier looks to extend his hitting streak to 28 against the Cubs tonight. Chicago starts left-hander James Russell, who Ethier's only faced once. In their lone matchup, Ethier grounded out to Russell on July 8, 2010. Ethier is hitting .219/.242/.344 against left-handers this year. Cubs at Dodgers, 10:10 p.m. ET

Matchup of the night -- Bartolo Colon's first two starts of the season have been fantastic -- he's 2-0 with a  1.84 ERA as a starter. Justin Verlander has traditionally started the season slowly, going 9-14 with a 4.75 ERA in March in April in his career, but he's 18-8 with a 2.75 ERA in the month of May. Yankees at Tigers, 7:05 p.m. ET

Flu boys -- Jered Weaver and Clay Buchholz each had their starts backed up a day to Monday after dealing with the flu on Sunday. Maybe that was just so we could see these two face-off at Fenway. Weaver was the best pitcher in the majors in April (so says CBSSports.com's baseball crew), but has struggled in his five career starts at Fenway Park, going 1-3 with a 7.76 ERA. Buchholz, 17-7 with a 2.33 ERA last season, haste to post and quality start this season. He's 1-3 with a 5.33 ERA. Angels at Red Sox, 7:10 p.m. ET

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Posted on: April 26, 2011 5:13 pm
 

On Deck: Harang goes for NL-leading fifth win

Harang

By Evan Brunell

Best matchup: Aaron Harang loves his new home in San Diego, as he's won all of his starts to date. With a victory in his fifth start Tuesday night, he would extend his NL-leading wins tally and pull within one of overall baseball leader Jered Weaver. Harang, who didn't make the 2010 postseason roster in Cincinnati after a three-year stretch of a 4.71 ERA and 18-38 record, has suddenly trimmed his walk rate to a career-best and has yet to allow a home run on the year. But he'll have his hands full winning the game as the Braves will toss out Jair Jurrjens. The 25-year-old started the year on the DL so has only made two starts so far, but what beauties they've been. In 13 total innings, Jurrjens has allowed just one run on a solo homer, walked three and whiffed 10. Both teams are scuffling on offense, so this could be quite the pitcher's duel. Braves at Padres, 10:05 p.m. ET

Chasing No. 23: Andre Ethier will seek to extend his hitting streak to 23 games for baseball's most dysfunctional squad. After seeing a trustee named Monday to oversee the club, GM Ned Colletti said Jonathan Broxton had lost his closer's job. But wait -- manager Don Mattingly disagrees. For all those people in an uproar over the death of soap opera TV shows, we've got a live version playing out before our very eyes. The Dodgers, behind phenom Clayton Kershaw, will battle Chris Volstad (good news for Ethier as Volstad has a 6.60 ERA on the year) and the 14-7 Marlins, who have matched the best start in franchise history as well as engineering nine comeback victories already. Dodgers at Marlins, 7:10 p.m. ET

Young guns: As the Red Sox chase .500, they'll ask Clay Buchholz to take the mound and address the troubles he's experienced early on. Buchholz has a 5.31 ERA on the year but is facing the right team in an attempt to turn his fortunes around as he has a 0.32 ERA in his last four starts against Baltimore. The O's were also Buchholz's victims back in 2007 when the youngster tossed a no-hitter. But the O's have their own electric starter coming out in rookie Zach Britton, who may have forced Baltimore's hand to keep him up the entire season and thusly qualify for free agency a full year earlier. Britton has a 3.16 ERA on the year and could be poised to cut a swath through Boston's lefty-heavy lineup. Red Sox at Orioles, 7:05 p.m. ET

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Posted on: April 17, 2011 12:30 pm
Edited on: April 18, 2011 12:10 pm
 

Pepper: Dangerous game for fans, too

Jose Salazar

By C. Trent Rosecrans


When I went to Class A game the other day, I sat in the front row just to film from that angle and I was shocked at just how close I was sitting -- and how little the fans around me were paying attention.

Of course, it's worse at the minor-league level and in spring training where the stadiums are smaller, but it's still dangerous at the big-league level. Last night in Los Angeles, a fan at the Dodgers game was hit by a foul ball from Matt Holliday and carried off on a stretcher and taken to the hospital. [Associated Press ]

This spring, of course, Braves minor league manager Luis Salazar was struck in the face by a foul ball and lost an eye.

On Friday, Salazar returned to manage the Lynchburg Hillcats.

This weekend, it was a feel-good story to see Salazar back in uniform, but it was so close to being different. [Lynchburg News Advance ]

STRANGE BALK -- Take a minute to watch this -- last night Justin Verlander tried to pick off Daric Barton at first, but caught a cleat in the dirt, so instead of making a bad throw to first, he threw home and hit David DeJesus. Home plate umpire John Hirschbeck ruled it a balk, awarding Barton second base. DeJesus later walked. Verlander said afterward, even he laughed at how it looked. [MLB.com ]

BRADEN LEAVES EARLY -- A's starter Dallas Braden left Saturday's game with shoulder stiffness after five innings. There's no update yet, but it could be bad news for the A's. [San Francisco Chronicle ]

AFRICAN-AMERICAN PARTICIPATION DECLINES
-- As teams honored Jackie Robinson this weekend, the Mets' Willie Harris finds the lack of African-Americans in the game "sad." Only 9.1 percent of major leaguers on opening day 2010 were African-American, while 20 percent were in 1995. Harris said he doesn't think MLB markets its top African-American stars, such as Torii Hunter, Carl Crawford and CC Sabathia, well enough. [New York Daily News

Rockies STARTER FALLS - - For the first time this season, a Rockies starter picked up a loss in the game. Jason Hamel was the first Rockies starter to earn an L, falling 8-3 to the Cubs and ending the Rockies' seven-game winning streak. [Associated Press ]

AND THERE'S THAT
--The other day White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said he has the league's best bullpen, despite his relievers blowing six saves and converting just one. On Saturday, he said he knows he has a good defensive team, despite its 15 errors this season, 13 in the last 10 games. [Chicago Tribune ]
 
SPEAKING OF -- The A's lead the majors with 17 errors, including one more on Saturday. First baseman Daric Barton -- widely viewed as one of the best defensive first basemen in the game -- is tied for the team-lead with three errors. Third baseman Kevin Kouzmanoff has three, as well. [MLB.com ]

EARNING HIS KEEP -- Could this be the year Alfonso Soriano lives up to his promise and salary? Soriano leads the Cubs with five home runs and 12 RBI. [Chicago Tribune ]

NO LEFTY -- The Dodgers don't have a left-handed reliever in their bullpen after Hong-Chih Kuo was place don the disabled list and replaced on the roster by right-hander Ramon Troncoso. [Los Angeles Times ]

ROYAL PEN -- One of the reasons the Royals are leading in the American League Central is their bullpen, well, almost all of their bullpen. In a reversal of expectations, only closer Joakim Soria, one of the best closers in baseball the last couple of years, has struggled. Manager Ned Yost said his closer is just "human" and should be fine. Still, the likes of Tim Collins, Jeremy Jeffress and Aaron Crow have impressed. [Kansas City Star ]

NEW PITCH -- Giants closer Brian Wilson is playing coy about a new pitch in his arsenal. Wilson, who will talk about most subjects, isn't discussing a new pitch he's throwing to right-handed batters. It may be a two-seam fastball, a cutter or even a screwball. [San Jose Mercury News ]

ATTENDANCE WOES -- This month six teams have set records for their lowest attendance since their current park opened -- the Braves, Indians, Mariners, Cardinals, Yankees and Twins. Overall attendance is down just two percent this year, which is less than I expected. [USA Today ]

HOW LOW CAN IT GO? -- Seattle is being hit particularly hard at the turnstiles. [Seattle Times ]

UBIQUITOUS OBLUQUE -- I missed this earlier this week, but heard Tim McCarver bring it up during yesterday's Mets-Braves games -- Michael S. Schmidt of the New York Times wrote a great article about the oblique injury, noting 14 players had gone on the DL this year with an oblique injury. Also, before MRI technology improved to its current point, the injury had been called rib cage or abdominal injuries, the diagnosis is just better nowadays.

BIG DRAFT -- What if you had to pick from Troy Tulowitzki, Ryan Zimmerman, Ryan Braun, Justin Upton, Ricky Romero, Andrew McCutchen, Jay Bruce, Mike Pelfrey, Wade Townsend, Chris Volstad, John Mayberry Jr., Jacoby Ellsbury, Colby Rasmus or Clay Buchholz? The 2005 draft offered those choices. [Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel ]

WRIGLEY GRIDIRON -- The Cubs and Northwestern want to continue playing football games at Wrigley Field, despite the challenges they faced this season. In the end, money wins. [Chicago Tribune ]

TUCSON HOME -- Padres owner Jeff Moorad said Tucson will be the Triple-A home for the Padres for at least another year and could be an option if the team isn't able to get funding for a park in Escondido, Calif. [Arizona Daily Star ]

A DIFFERENT MANNY -- Manny Ramirez changed when he went to Boston. [Akron Beacon-Journal ]

HOT DOGGIN' -- A look at the best and craziest hot dogs at ballparks this season. I'm thinking about getting that Meat Lovers Dog at Great American Ball Park later today. I'll take pictures. In the name of "journalism" of course. I'm also curious about the Bahn Mi Dog at Nationals Stadium and [SeriousEats.com ]

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Posted on: April 10, 2011 3:45 pm
Edited on: April 10, 2011 4:53 pm
 

Red Sox sign Buchholz to extension

By Matt Snyder

Starting pitcher Clay Buchholz has signed a four-year contract extension with the Red Sox, the team announced via press release Sunday. FOXSports.com reports the deal is worth "around $30 million," which is a similar deal to Red Sox ace Jon Lester. The deal eats up the remainder of Buchholz's arbitration years plus one free agent season, as he was set to be a free agent in after 2014, but that is now delayed until after 2015. It also includes two club options, which could keep him under Boston's control through the 2017 season.

The 26-year-old right-hander has gotten off to a rough start in 2011, as he sits 0-2 with a 7.20 ERA and 1.80 WHIP after two starts. He's coughed up five home runs in 10 innings. Still, that's a small sample and we got a glimpse of Buchholz's promise last season when he went 17-7 with a 2.33 ERA in 173 2/3 innings -- making his first All-Star team. He will form a solid one-two punch of youth in the rotation alongside Lester.

Off the field, Buchholz is very involved with Boston as well. He serves as an ambassador for the Jimmy Fund, which raises awareness and build support for cancer research and care. He was the 2010 BoSox Club Man of the Year, which awards a player for both on-field performance and efforts in community endeavors.

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Category: MLB
Posted on: March 24, 2011 8:45 pm
Edited on: March 24, 2011 9:53 pm
 

3 up, 3 down for 3/24: Slugging Stanton

By Matt Snyder

3 UP

Mike Stanton, Marlins. Florida's big bopper hadn't yet appeared in a spring game this season due to a quad injury. He made up for lost time Thursday in a stunning performance of his slugging prowess. He went 3-4 with two runs scored. Oh yeah, he also hit 3-run home runs in back-to-back at-bats, ending the day with seven RBI. His power is immense. Stanton hit 22 home runs last year in 359 at-bats and he was only 20. He was killing the ball in Triple-A before his call, as he had 21 bombs in just 192 at-bats. There's 40-homer potential in that bat for years to come.

Brad Emaus, Mets. The Mets' bats went nuts, scoring 16 runs on 23 hits, but the day was most significant for Emaus, as he zeroes in on the second base job vacated by Luis Castillo's dismissal. He went 4-4 with a double, home run, three runs and an RBI.

Darwin Barney, Cubs. The 25 year old is doing all he can to make Mike Quade forget about leaving Barney on the bench. He's already made the opening day roster, but is slated as a backup utility infielder with Jeff Baker all set to start at second base. Barney went 2-4 with a triple and two RBI Thursday. He also seems comfortable defensively with shortstop Starlin Castro. It would appear this is the double-play combo of the future in Wrigley, but how far in the future remains to be seen.

3 DOWN

Clay Buchholz, Red Sox. Of the 11 runs Buchholz allowed, only six were earned, but everything was troubling about the outing. He gave up 11 hits, including a whopping four home runs, in four innings. He threw too many balls, falling behind to many hitters. The silver lining here is that the wind was blowing out to center.

Jaime Garcia, Cardinals. Garcia also coughed up double digits worth of runs (10), though only four were earned, as a Skip Schumaker error opened the door for some extra runs. Still, Garcia was knocked around the yard for 14 hits in four innings, including two longballs. He even balked. The spring ERA of 7.94 doesn't look promising for a club looking for guys to step up in the absence of Adam Wainwright.

Scott Kazmir, Angels. He didn't want Buchholz and Garcia to be the only guys in double figures, so Kazmir joined the party with 10 runs, eight hits and three walks. He also had some unearned runs, but only two, so the eight earned were the highest of the trio. Kazmir did last five innings, but coughing up 10 runs to these "Brewers" -- without Prince Fielder, Rickie Weeks or Corey Hart in the lineup -- was pretty terrible. His spring ERA is up to 7.79.

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Posted on: November 5, 2010 3:10 pm
 

What are the Blue Jays thinking?

Miguel Olivo
What's the deal with the Blue Jays? First they trade a player to be named later to the Rockies for catcher Miguel Olivo, then they promptly decline the 2011 option on Olivo's contract, paying a $500,000 buyout. So at this point, they are out a PTBNL and half a million dollars, and they have nothing to show for it.

Well, that's not entirely true. Olivo is now their property, so if he signs elsewhere, they get the compensatory pick for him as a Type B free agent, which is a sandwich pick after the first round. Is a sandwich pick worth $500,000? Actually, it might be, especially in a year when the draft is as deep as next year's is shaping up to be.

Let's look at the last really deep draft, in 2005. Sandwich picks that year included Clay Buchholz and Jed Lowrie, plus others who have seen time in the majors (Travis Buck, Garrett Olson, Ryan Tucker, Cesar Ramos). Is it worth $500,000 to have a Buchholz or Lowrie under control at low cost for six years? Definitely. But the Jays would have to hope they pick well there.

So maybe the Jays aren't nuts. Except, now general manager Alex Anthopoulos says the draft pick was not the reason he made these decisions. Actually, his comments in a conference call with reporters didn't leave things completely clear.

"No [on making the moves to get the compensation pick], and I've been reading a lot of that today. There's a lot of components with that. We didn't talk about the players that we pursued last offseason. When we signed John Buck, we were really agonizing over -- at the time -- Miguel Olivo and John Buck. ... Collectively, we elected to go with John Buck. Knowing that John's a free agent and, as we continue to gather information, whether it's just getting a sense of a market and so on, it seems to be, and rightfully so, that the market for John Buck is going to be incredibly strong."
OK, so the Jays acquired Olivo so they could keep him as insurance because they think Buck is going to end up out of their price range. And they definitely need a veteran catcher as they work Catcher of the Future J.P. Arencibia into the majors next season. So why not just pick up Olivo's $2.5 million option? If they are able to bring back Buck, they could just trade Olivo. If they do lose Buck and then try to sign Olivo, it's not like the catcher's agent is going to give them credit for the $500,000 they already paid him -- that's a sunk cost. Now every dollar over $2 million they pay him for next year would be money they might as well have set on fire. And it's almost certainly going to take more than $2 million to sign him.

Another danger: In order to get the sandwich pick, a team has to offer a player salary arbitration and the player has to decline. So the Jays will have to offer, and what if, Buck or no Buck, Olivo accepts? After batting .269, the second-highest average of his career, he's not going to get less than his $2 million 2010 salary in arbitration, plus he's already got half a million in his pocket. It's a win-win for Olivo.

And it looks like a lose-lose for Toronto. Maybe they've got an end game we're not aware of yet, but this is a curious series of decisions.

-- David Andriesen

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com