Clay Buchholz Looks To Keep Rolling As He Opens Second Half Against Royals

Clay BuchholzThe 2014 season has been a strange one filled with plenty of disappointment for Boston Red Sox pitcher Clay Buchholz. However, the right-hander may have turned a corner and will look to continue his recent hot streak on Friday night.

Buchholz will get the ball in the Sox’s first game out of the All-Star break. Coincidentally, it will mark Buchholz’s second game in as many Red Sox games, as he got the start in the final game before the break.¬†According to Elias, Buchholz will be the first Boston pitcher to start back-to-back team games since Hideo Nomo did it in 2001 around the events of Sept. 11.

The Sox are hoping Buchholz can get right back to where he was last Sunday in Houston. He shut down the Astros with easily his best start of the season. Buchholz tossed a three-hit shutout with 12 strikeouts and no walks. He became the first Boston pitcher to notch at least 12 strikeouts and no walks in a shutout since, coincidentally, Nomo did so in the 2001 season.

Buchholz has had a lot of success against the Royals in the past. He has a 4-1 record with a 2.20 ERA in five starts against KC, including a 2-0 record at Fenway Park with a 1.20 ERA.

The Red Sox will face right-hander James Shields. That’s good news for David Ortiz, who has had plenty of success against the former Tampa Bay Rays starter. Ortiz has a .316 average (18-for-57) with three home runs and 16 RBIs against Shields.

Here are the lineups for both clubs for Friday night’s series opener at Fenway Park.

Red Sox (43-52)
Brock Holt, RF
Dustin Pedroia, 2B
David Ortiz, DH
Mike Napoli, 1B
Daniel Nava, LF
Xander Bogaerts, 3B
Stephen Drew, SS
David Ross, C
Jackie Bradley Jr., CF

Clay Buchholz, P

Royals (48-46)
Lorenzo Cain, CF
Omar Infante, 2B
Eric Hosmer, 1B
Salvador Perez, C
Alex Gordon, LF
Billy Butler, DH
Mike Moustakas, 3B
Alcides Escobar, SS
Norichika Aoki, RF

James Shields, P

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