Clay Buchholz Hoping to Reward Red Sox Offense With Better Outings Down the Stretch

by abournenesn

May 25, 2012

Clay Buchholz Hoping to Reward Red Sox Offense With Better Outings Down the StretchBOSTON – Clay Buchholz is still trying to work out the kinks.

The Red Sox hurler is coming off a shaky outing against the Orioles, where he allowed five runs and six hits through 5 1/3 innings. It was the seventh occasion this season that Buchholz yielded at least five runs in an outing.

Through nine starts –– 49 1/3 innings –– Buchholz has allowed 43 earned runs, just two shy of the 45 total runs that he allowed in 2010. That year, he went 17-7 with a 2.33 ERA after tossing 173 2/3 frames.

For most of the season, it's been one big inning that has troubled Buchholz. Despite the obstacles this season, Buchholz couldn't identify a specific cause for his early woes.

"If I knew the reason, it probably wouldn't happen," Buchholz said.

Since spring training, Buchholz has deflected any lasting impacts of the back injury that shortened his season in 2011.

Although he owns a major league-worst 7.84 ERA, Buchholz has still collected four wins this season. The four "W's" in the column are tied with Felix Doubront and Josh Beckett for the team lead.

He credits the offense's run support during his starts for bailing him out on a bevy of occasions — and he's hoping to reward them for their patience and contributions in the coming weeks.

"I'm pretty fortunate the team scores runs like they do whenever I go out and pitch the majority of the time," Buchholz said. "At some point this season, sooner than later, I think I'm going to be a guy that they're going to depend on going out there and giving them seven to eight innings every time I go out there and keep them in the game.

"It's just things aren't happening right now for me."

Buchholz is scheduled to make his next start Sunday against the Rays and starter Jeremy Hellickson.

Have a question for Didier Morais? Send it to him via Twitter at @DidierMorais or send it here. He will pick a few questions to answer every week for his mailbag.

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