The Red Sox had Clay Buchholz throw a bullpen session yesterday as opposed to a rehab start as originally planned. While the change was designed to help his arm strength following shoulder bursitis, the timeline for his return remains a mystery.
According to Rob Bradford of WEEI.com, Buchholz said today that he still felt some soreness during his bullpen session yesterday. There’s no plan for a rehab start at this time and he’s expected to be reevaluated after the All-Star break. Buchholz told Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe that he’s aiming to throw a bullpen session Thursday, so the Red Sox could map things out from there if there’s no discomfort. He’ll need to make it through a simulated game before being cleared for a rehab start.
Buchholz has been out of action since June 8. The 28-year-old right-hander was off to a fantastic start prior to hitting the disabled list, posting a 1.71 ERA and 81/29 K/BB ratio over 84 1/3 innings. His absence appears likely to stretch into August at this point.
Bob Nightengale of USA Today says that the San Francisco Giants “have keen interest” in Rays third baseman Evan Longoria.
Longoria is coming off his worst season as a major leaguer, having hit .261/.313/.424 with 20 homers in 2017. He’s also still owed $86 million through 2022. Which, back when the deal was signed seemed like quite a bargain for the Rays — and likely has been over the duration of the contract — but now seems somewhat steep for the 32 year-old third baseman. That said, the Giants currently have Pablo Sandoval penciled in at third base on their depth chart, so Longoria would definitely be an upgrade, even if 2017’s dip wasn’t just a blip.
Nightengale says that for the Giants to take on Longoria, the Rays would have to take on a high salary veteran such as Denard Span or Hunter Pence. Span is owed $9 million in 2018, with a $4 million buyout on a $12 million option for 2019. Pence is owed $18.5 million in 2018 in the final year of his contract and has a full no-trade clause.
If he stays with the Rays, Longoria will achieve 10-5 rights — full no-trade protection due to being a ten-year veteran with five years of service on the same club — so if the Rays are going to move him, it’ll be much easier this offseason, not once the 2018 season begins.