Clay Buchholz slated to return Sunday against the Yankees

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Clay Buchholz has already missed one turn in the rotation due to soreness in the AC joint in his right shoulder, but there was some concern yesterday that he would need to be skipped again this weekend against the Yankees. Fortunately for the Red Sox, that will not be necessary.

Sean McAdam of CSNNE.com reports that Buchholz felt no discomfort during while throwing a light bullpen session this afternoon. He’s now slated to make his return to the rotation Sunday night against Hiroki Kuroda.

Buchholz allowed one run in seven innings in his most recent start last Wednesday against the White Sox. He is 7-0 with an AL-leading 1.73 ERA through 10 starts this season.

Royals fire manager Mike Matheny after 65-97 end to season

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Manager Mike Matheny and pitching coach Cal Eldred were fired by the Kansas Cty Royals on Wednesday night, shortly after the struggling franchise finished the season 65-97 with a listless 9-2 loss to the Cleveland Guardians.

The Royals had exercised their option on Matheny’s contract for 2023 during spring training, when the club hoped it was turning the corner from also-ran to contender again. But plagued by poor pitching, struggles from young position players and failed experiments with veterans, the Royals were largely out of playoff contention by the middle of summer.

The disappointing product led owner John Sherman last month to fire longtime front office executive Dayton Moore, the architect of back-to-back American League champions and the 2015 World Series title team. Moore was replaced by one of his longtime understudies, J.J. Picollo, who made the decision to fire Matheny hours after the season ended.

Matheny became the fifth big league manager to be fired this year.

Philadelphia’s Joe Girardi was replaced on June 3 by Rob Thomson, who engineered a miraculous turnaround to get the Phillies into the playoffs as a wild-card team. The Angels replaced Joe Maddon with Phil Nevin four days later, Toronto’s Charlie Montoyo was succeeded by John Schneider on July 13 and the Rangers’ Chris Woodward by Tony Beasley on Aug. 15.

In addition, Miami’s Don Mattingly said late last month that he will not return next season.