Sunday, August 30, 2009

Buchholz Matures Into A Pitcher, At Least For One Night...Boston 3 Toronto 2

Clay Buchholz' 95 MPH four seamer set up all his other pitches, most notably his nasty curve, as the Boston Red Sox defeated the Toronto Blue Jays by a score of 3-2. If this was the Buchholz we'll see often in the future, Boston is in good shape. Clay came within two outs of pitching a complete game and when manager Tito Francona trotted out to put Okajima in to pitch to the upcoming lefthanded batter, the Fenway crowd booed as one. Papelbon had to come in to record the final two outs but the night belonged to Clay. First pitch strikes and more first pitch strikes made it tough for the Canadian birdies. His catcher said this...

“I was just talking to him and tried to let him know that as a hitter, I didn’t really want to face him,” said catcher Victor Martinez. “I’m glad that I’m on his side now, just for him to know he has great stuff. He just needs to throw it a little more and go right at hitters. If you see how he pitched today, it sounds easy, but it’s not. He was throwing a lot of 0-1, 0-2 counts, and I always say when you face a pitcher like that who jumps on you early in the count, it’s pretty tough. He’s not a secret. Clay has great stuff.”

His manager agreed. Here he is...

“That was a terrific game,’’ Francona said. “He threw strikes with a lot of pitches, changeup, breaking ball, fastball. There was one situation - and I know it was probably four innings ago - but he got behind on the leadoff hitter after a long inning, threw a nice little two-seamer for a grounder. He really pitched well. He has a great changeup. I actually think when he establishes his fastball and makes hitters respect that, it makes his changeup that much better. You start adding in two breaking balls for strikes, it gave him a lot of different looks.’’

And the man himself, who is maturing before our very eyes. When he is "on," watch out, opposing hitters...

"I think I was better tonight than that one night,” Buchholz said when asked about his no-no. “I look at that video whenever we face Baltimore and there were a lot of pitches I left up that could have been hit out of the park just as quick as they popped them up or swung through them.”

In terms of control and domination, he WAS better than his no-no against the Orioles. Watch the 8am EDT NESN condensed one hour replay of the game and you'll see for yourself. I guarantee it. In all, he was able to go 8 1/3 innings and gave up only 3 hits, walking 2 and striking out 9 (!!). He was so much fun to watch. Remember, in the fifth inning, the score was only 1-0 Good Guys, so he was pitching with pressure as a partner. In all, the Sox left 12 men stranded on base, but he was up to the task. Here he is one more time...

"Now I think I’ve evolved into a pitcher instead of just being able to go out there and throw a ball.’’

Keep it going, Clay. God knows, this team needs you bigtime.

On another note, I hope you had a chance yesterday to watch some or all of Ted Kennedy's funeral. It was touching beyond words. Goodbye, Teddy. May your soul rest in peace forever. AMEN.

Today, this afternoon, actually, it's be Jon Lester ready to face the ace of the Blue Jays' staff , Roy "Doc" Halladay. Let's beat him again. You can click on this post's title for more on last night's game and as always, BE WELL. Thanks for being here.


Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home