Quietly, Clay Buchholz has been the Red Sox best starter, getting a bit better each time out. He struck out a career-high 10 in a hard-luck 3-0 loss to Texas on Thursday.
Buchholz has allowed just three earned runs in his last 13 2/3 innings overall. He is 3-3 with a 3.79 ERA against Toronto.
Marcum missed all of 2009 following elbow surgery but flirted with a no-hitter in his season debut. He has remained solid since and carries an impressive 23-to-4 strikeout-to-walk ratio into Tuesday's action.
In 11 games — six starts — against the Red Sox, the righty is 4-2 with a 3.67 ERA.
Marco Scutaro, SS
Dustin Pedroia, 2B
Victor Martinez, C
Kevin Youkilis, 1B
J.D. Drew, RF
David Ortiz, DH
Adrian Beltre, 3B
Jeremy Hermida, LF
Darnell McDonald, CF
Fred Lewis, LF
Aaron Hill, 2B
Adam Lind, DH
Vernon Wells, CF
Lyle Overbay, 1B
Alex Gonzalez, SS
Jose Bautista, 3B
John Buck, C
Travis Snider, RF
Second baseman Dustin Pedroia had two stolen bases Monday for the first time since last June 17.
Scutaro, Pedroia and Kevin Youkilis were a combined 9-for-15 with nine runs scored.
Opponents are hitting .063 (2-for-32) against Manny Delcarmen this year.
Third baseman Jose Bautista has three homers and 11 RBIs in his last seven games.
Center fielder Vernon Wells is one home run shy of 200 and needs three RBIs to move into second on the all-time Blue Jays list.
Outfielder Travis Snider was the only Toronto starter without a hit Monday is now just 8-for-60 (.133) this season.
BLACK AND BLUE
A CT scan done on left fielder Jacoby Ellsbury revealed hairline fractures in four ribs. He is eligible to return from the 15-day disabled list April 27. Team officials said his treatment plan will not change and he will resume play only when his symptoms are gone. Ellsbury said Sunday that he feels about the same as he has for a week or so, and his baseball-related activities are "light".
Daisuke Matsuzaka threw 69 pitches in a four-inning simulated game Monday. He will be activated from the disabled list later this week and is expected to start Saturday in Baltimore. In three rehab starts in the minors while recovering from a neck strain, the right hander was 2-0 with a 1.62 ERA.
Center fielder Mike Cameron was placed on the 15-day disabled list Tuesday with a sports hernia. His term is retroactive to April 19. Both he and Ellsbury traveled with the team to Toronto.
Third baseman Edwin Encarnacion was placed on the 15-day disabled list Friday with a right shoulder injury.
Lefty Brian Tallet was also placed on the DL on Friday with left forearm soreness. The move is retroactive to April 18.
Right handers Scott Richmond and Jesse Litsch are both on the 60-day DL and targeting June returns.
Buchholz has been a better pitcher when he knows his role, and now that his spot in the rotation is secure, look for him to continue his progression. The Sox could sure use it — their rotation has an ERA of 5.56, 13th in the American League, and six relievers were needed Monday.