Red Sox starter Clay Buchholz will not begin his rehab as originally scheduled, according to Tim Britton. Buchholz has been dealing with bursitis in his right shoulder and hasn’t pitched since June 8.
More from Britton’s column:
The plan now is for Buchholz to throw a bullpen session Sunday, possibly another on Tuesday in New York at the All-Star Game and then to return to Boston for a simulated game toward the end of next week. If all that goes well, then Buchholz would go out for a single rehab start, after which he could come back to the Red Sox rotation.
“It’s a little bit different than we had kind of put together initially,” manager John Farrell said. “The most important thing is there’s no issues shoulder-wise, any kind of discomfort. He’s just in basically that reconditioning phase, getting back closer to game shape.”
Buchholz was an early frontrunner in the AL Cy Young award conversation, posting a 1.71 ERA with a 9-0 record over 12 starts, and a career high strikeout rate of 25 percent. Britton suggests that the delay may create an incentive for the Red Sox to add a starter before the July 31 trade deadline.
With a 6-1 win over the Twins in Sunday’s season finale, the Royals clinched the best record in the American League, which nets them home field advantage in the ALDS and ALCS. The Royals stand at 95-67 while the Blue Jays, who lost on Sunday, finish at 93-69.
95-67 is the Royals’ best record since finishing 97-65 in 1980, when they lost the World Series to the Phillies. Their division title is their first since 1985.
In the ALDS, which starts on Thursday, the Royals will host the winner of the AL Wild Card game between the Astros and Yankees. They are looking to avenge last year’s World Series loss, in seven games, to the Giants. The Blue Jays will host the Rangers in the other ALDS series.
Both the Astros’ and the Yankees’ fates were decided before their own games had completed on Sunday. The Rangers defeated the Angels, which clinched a Wild Card spot for the Astros. Then the Astros dropped Sunday’s season finale to the Diamondbacks, which clinched the first AL Wild Card slot for the Yankees. The Yankees are on their way to a loss against the Orioles as of this writing, but that will not affect anything now.
The Astros were in a 3-3 tie with the Diamondbacks in the seventh inning, but reliever Chad Qualls served up a two-run home run to Paul Goldschmidt. That would prove to be the deciding factor in a 5-3 loss.
The Yankees are losing 7-4 to the Orioles behind a subpar start by Michael Pineda and a shaky performance by the bullpen.
The MLB postseason opens up with the Yankees hosting the Astros on Tuesday in the AL Wild Card game. The winner moves on to face the Royals in Kansas City in the ALDS.