Red Sox to (finally) call up Clay Buchholz

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The Clay Buchholz era is about to begin in Boston. Well, begin again anyway. I think it’s the third era for him:

In order to give their starters extra rest during the All-Star
break, the Red Sox will promote heralded prospect Clay Buchholz from
Triple-A Pawtucket to start Friday’s series opener in Toronto.

The 24-year-old right-hander is having a breakout season with the
PawSox, going 7-2 with a 2.36 ERA in 16 appearances. In 99 innings this
seaon, opponents were hitting just .188 against Buchholz, who has
registered 89 strikeouts, 30 walks and tossed one complete game.

Red Sox manager Terry Francona did not announce a corresponding
roster move on Sunday, but one will be made before Buchholz takes the
hill against the Blue Jays.

Probably a bunch of moves unless they plan on bringing up Buchholz for
a single start and sending him back down again. This is especially true
given that Jed Lowrie and Mike Lowell are about to be activated again
as well. Could the long-rumored Penny trade be afoot? Could they be
dealing Saito and moving Smoltz to the bullpen, which is probably where
he needs to be anyway?

No idea. But since there’s no baseball of consequence until Thursday, we have a lot of time to sit and wonder about it.

Video: Albert Almora, Jr. saved by the ivy

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images
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The ALCS had a weird play in Game 4 on Tuesday night, but Game 4 of the NLCS did as well. This one involved Cubs outfielder Albert Almora, Jr. and his attempt to spark a rally in the bottom of the ninth inning against Dodgers reliever Ross Stripling.

After Alex Avila singled, Almora ripped a double to left field, past a diving Enrique Hernandez. The ball rolled to the ivy in front of the wall. Most outfielders there would’ve put their hands up, which would have alerted the umpires to call an immediate ground-rule double. Hernandez didn’t, instead fishing the ball out and firing it back into the infield. Avila had stopped at third base, but Almora kept running. Much to his surprise, he pulled up into third base to see his teammate standing there, resigned to his fate as a dead duck. Third baseman Justin Turner applied the tag on Almora for what he thought was the first out of the inning.

Almora, however, was then sent back to second base after the umpires correctly called a ground-rule double.

Unfortunately for the Cubs, the lucky break didn’t help as closer Kenley Jansen came in and took care of business, retiring all three batters he faced without letting an inherited runner score. The Dodgers won 6-1 and now lead the NLCS three games to none. They’ll try to punch their ticket to the World Series on Wednesday.