Clay Buchholz was a little bit late to the game at the start of spring training when he suffered a mild hamstring strain at the start of camp. But a brief respite from throwing at the earliest stages of camp has been just about the only thing that has gone wrong for him this spring.

The right-hander continued his strong spring training, requiring just 45 pitches (30 strikes) to blitz through four scoreless innings in which he permitted three hits while striking out one and walking none. His low-90s two-seam fastball did its job perfectly, as he elicited eight groundball outs (including a pair on a double-play) and breezed efficiently through the Blue Jays lineup (while also showing, at times, a quality changeup and curveball). In doing so, he also felt that he maintained his improved tempo on the mound, working aggressively through his outing.

“Everything’s starting to fall together,” said Buchholz. “[I was] just able to go out there and execute pitches like one after another a little bit better than the last time out and the time before that. I feel like it’s all coming together just for the spring, getting up and down a little bit more and then the next time I go out it’ll be five innings. It’s starting to feel more real right now.

“I feel comfortable with all my pitches, there’s not one particularly pitch I feel like I need to work on more than the other one,” he added. “I think I’m right where I need to be right now.”

Buchholz has now thrown 8 1/3 scoreless innings this spring, giving up six hits and two walks while striking out seven.