Clay Buchholz could spend the next two months doing nothing but pumping iron, and he never would have shoulders as broad as, say, Josh Beckett or Jon Lester.
But that doesn’t mean Buchholz is unable to bear the burden of what has happened to the Red Sox.
Buchholz wasn’t around for most of September 2011, a stress fracture in his back rendering the starter a spectator during one of the all-time late-season collapses. Then, last season, the 28-year-old logged a career-high 1891⁄3 innings and notched a 3.62 ERA after May 6 and a 4.56 ERA overall.
It wasn’t good enough. Not by a longshot.
“I always say it starts with the guys on the mound, and I definitely think that it wasn’t the year any of us wanted to have,” Buchholz told the Herald yesterday after joining Lester, John Lackey and nearly two dozen other pitchers in a voluntary workout on the practice fields behind JetBlue Park. “There were a lot of things that went on last year, but as a staff, yeah, things definitely could’ve gone a lot better.”
And if the Sox are going to reverse course after their worst season in nearly a half-century, Buchholz knows things will have to go better for a starting rotation that recorded the majors’ fourth-worst earned run average (5.19) and didn’t include a single pitcher with an ERA better than the league average.
Buchholz up front
Boston Herald | Feb 9