Buchholz pitched through blister Monday

May, 1, 2012
BOSTON -- Red Sox right-hander Clay Buchholz pitched through a blister problem Monday night at Fenway Park, manager Bobby Valentine said Tuesday.

Valentine called the condition a chronic one that occurs when Buchholz is getting good snap on his curveball. Therefore it pops up when the right-hander is throwing well, which Valentine insisted he is, despite his less-than-stellar numbers.

After allowing six runs in 6 2/3 innings against Oakland, Buchholz’s ERA sat at 8.69 through five starts. He has struck out 16 and walked 15 in 29 innings.

“I know everyone wants to look at the numbers and the numbers really aren’t pretty except for the 3-1 [record], and a lot of innings haven’t been pretty, but the idea that he can improve is absolutely paramount in all of our minds,” Valentine said. “He just left my office where we talked about that. There’s no doubt that he has plenty of room for improvement.”

News of the blister led to speculation that the condition could give the team an opening to place Buchholz on the disabled list and allow him to work back into form on the sidelines while creating a spot in the rotation for Aaron Cook, who has an opt-out clause in his contract if he's not on the major-league roster by today.

Valentine said the blister was not an issue Monday night and that Buchholz simply needs to get back to being the pitcher he has been in the past.

“I’m not sure that he’s totally comfortable with all of his pitches yet,” Valentine said. “I think he’s had games where he really liked his two-seamer, really liked his curveball, really liked his changeup at different times, but they haven’t been in total the entire time. Last night he did pitch through a blister situation most of the night, which might have contributed a little bit to his command. He does it often.”

Valentine added that Buchholz “doctors” the blister and pitches through it. Buchholz is scheduled to start against Baltimore on Sunday at Fenway.



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