Cleveland - 100 000 301 - 5 12 0 Red Sox - 220 030 00x - 7 12 1Buchholz (6.1-8-4-3-0, 111) overcame a shaky first inning - two singles, one walk, and one HBP, all with two outs - and pitched into the seventh inning. It was easily his best outing of the year.
After Cleveland had taken a 1-0 lead, the Red Sox scored two quick runs of their own, as Will Middlebrooks doubled with the bases loaded, scoring Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz. In the second, Pedroia cracked a two-run double of his own, and finished the night with three hits and three RBI.
Adrian Gonzalez reached base five times, on two doubles, two walks and a HBP. ... Daniel Nava and Cody Ross both walked twice and doubled. ... Six of Boston's 12 hits were doubles, and they drew a total of eight walks off a trio of Cleveland pitchers.
Trailing 7-1, Cleveland made things interesting in the seventh. With one out, Buchholz gave up two singles and walk, and left with the bases loaded. Rich Hill walked in a run, Middlebrooks's fielding error let in a second run, and Michael Brantley's single made it 7-4.
Vicente Padilla came in with runners at second and third and only one out, and doused the fire. Alfredo Aceves had a bumpy ninth, giving up a walk, two singles, and a run, but he prevailed, stranding the potential tying run at second base by retiring Johnny Damon on a fly ball to center.
Number of pitches for the first four Red Sox pitchers: Buchholz (111), Hill (11), Andrew Miller (11), Franklin Morales (11). Sadly, Padilla (9) and Aceves (29) did not continue the pattern.
Ubaldo Jiminez / Clay Buchholz
Sweeney, CFThere is only one pitcher in baseball history who has allowed five or more runs in each of his first six appearances in a season - and he is pitching for the Red Sox tonight. Over the past 100 years, no Red Sox pitcher has allowed more earned runs in his first six starts than Clay Buchholz has this season (33).
Buchholz has been, by far, the worst starting pitcher in baseball. He has the highest ERA (9.09) and worst WHIP (2.020). Opposing batters are hitting .343/.428/.613/1.041 against him; both righties and lefties have an OPS over 1.000. Buchholz has allowed 10 home runs, as many as he allowed last season, in 50 additional innings. For the rest of the season, if Buchholz can give us what John Lackey did in 2011, it will be a huge improvement.
And he leads the team with three wins, which should be more than enough reason for all of us to never, ever cite W-L records as a meaningful statistic again.
Since making it back to .500 (11-11) on April 30, the Red Sox have gone 1-8. ... They have also lost 11 of their last 12 home games.