Jon Lester is the Red Sox’ starter tonight, but given that this is basically a must-win game, it could be one of those games where the starter has a short (read: non-existent) leash. If Lester doesn’t have his mojo, where does Terry Francona turn? How about to Clay Buchholz?
That’s the possibility raised by WEEI.com, who reports that Buchholz, who was originally supposed to pitch an Instructional League game Florida, is going to stay with the team for tonight’s game with the Orioles and could in fact be activated. If he’s activated, you have to figure that he’s the top option for Francona in the event that Lester stumbles.
Buchholz hasn’t pitched in the majors since June. If he’s pitching tonight it could mean that the Red Sox’ season is effectively over. Or it could be the stuff that legends are made of.
In a mailbag published on Thursday, Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post says he has spoken with Arenado and his agent from the Wasserman Media Group. Based on that, he says the Rockies have not broached the subject of a contract extension with the All-Star third baseman.
Arenado will enter his second of four years of arbitration eligibility after earning $5 million for the 2016 season. He’s due to a hefty pay raise and will continue on that track into free agency after the 2019 season. It may behoove the Rockies to get extension talks started sooner rather than later. Saunders, however, thinks that Arenado wants to see if the Rockies become contenders in the next two seasons before signing the dotted line.
Arenado, 25, enters Thursday’s action batting .293/.361/.567 with 40 home runs, 130 RBI, and 112 runs scored in 678 plate appearances. His 40 homers is best in the National League and the 130 RBI are best in the majors. He has an argument for winning the National League Most Valauble Player Award.
Agent Scott Boras eulogized client Jose Fernandez at his funeral on Thursday. Boras couldn’t even get through the first sentence without breaking down in tears. It was difficult to watch without wanting to sob myself, but it was a touching eulogy that spoke for a lot of people who were fond of Fernandez.