Red Sox starter Clay Buchholz will not start tomorrow evening for the start of a two-game home-and-home against the Phillies, reports Evan Drellich on Twitter. Buchholz is suffering from an injury in the “collar bone area”, but manager John Farrell called the move precautionary and mentioned that Buchholz could simply start later in the week.
Nick Cafardo reports that Alfredo Aceves will start in Buchholz’s place tomorrow. Aceves was recently recalled from Triple-A Pawtucket after a very rough start to the 2013 season. The right-hander carried an 8.66 ERA through April 23 prior to his demotion. In his first appearance back in the Majors, he tossed a scoreless inning of relief against the Indians.
Buchholz is having a great season thus far, sitting with a 7-0 record and a league best 1.73 ERA in 72 innings.
The Padres may have some interest in acquiring Phillies third baseman Maikel Franco, according to a recent report from Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. It seems unlikely that the team would deal their starting third baseman with J.P. Crawford (fractured left hand) sidelined through July; to that end, however, they signed infielder Danny Espinosa as minor league depth on Friday and have reportedly been eying the Rangers’ Adrian Beltre, among other veteran options.
Franco, 25, entered Sunday batting .255/.297/.425 with nine home runs and a .721 OPS in 229 plate appearances this season. While he has yet to live up to the .280+ average, 1.9+ fWAR he posted during his rookie campaign, he’s been a solid 20+ home run producer over the last few years and shown some stability at the hot corner. He’s also under team control for the next three years and could provide some much-needed insurance behind the Padres’ current third base option, 27-year-old Christian Villanueva.
Rosenthal notes that the Phillies could strike a deal for one of San Diego’s relievers, though no one specific has been connected to the team yet — and the club probably wouldn’t be able to finesse a one-for-one deal given the quality of the Padres’ pitchers. The Phillies’ bullpen has looked downright abysmal over the last month, placing 11th-worst in the league with a collective 5.34 ERA and 0.3 fWAR. Their failure to procure a viable reliever beyond Seranthony Dominguez, Victor Arano and Edubray Ramos lends a certain urgency to any potential deal they make over the next few weeks, though the official trade deadline is still over a month away.