Clay Buchholz will be back in the rotation Friday when the Red Sox travel to New York to face the Yankees after being scratched Monday against the Phillies with irritation in his collarbone.
He initially felt the pain upon returning to Boston after his last start, in Chicago May 22. It was determined to be irritation in his right AC joint. The decision to sit Buchholz was precautionary, the Sox not wanting to turn a minor early-season issue into something that lingers through the season.
He threw his normal bullpen session Saturday and played catch and long toss Monday.
“He continues to improve,” said manager John Farrell. “Right now we have every intention of him starting Friday in New York.”
Franklin Morales, who has been out since spring training with injuries to his back and pectoral muscle, was activated, and Alfredo Aceves, who got the win Monday by pitching one-run ball for six innings, was sent back to Triple A Pawtucket.
After going five innings in a rehab start with the Portland Sea Dogs last Thursday, Morales will work out of the bullpen.
Pap is back
No one had saved more games at Fenway than Jonathan Papelbon, but when he came on with a two-run lead in the ninth, he was showered with a sound he had never heard there before — boos.
His job was to preserve the 3-1 lead after Cliff Lee’s eight dominant innings, and he did, sitting Jonny Gomes, Dustin Pedroia, and David Ortiz down in order.
But for the first time since leaving the Sox to sign a four-year, $50 million contract with the Phillies in November of 2011, he was Fenway’s villain. He embraced the role, talking himself up — or actually his alter ego “Cinco Ocho” — before storming out of the bullpen to record his 10th save of the season.
His only scare was Ortiz’s moonshot on a 2-and-2 pitch that sliced foul down the right-field line.
Ortiz couldn’t look at the mound.
“I was trying not to look at his face, man,” he said. “I tried hard — hard! But he’s looking good, man. Looks like he’s having a good year, and that’s Pap, man.”
For a brief moment, as the ball sailed toward the stands, Ortiz thought he had gotten the best of Papelbon. Ultimately, he grounded out to end the game.
“Oh, yeah,” Ortiz said. “He got lucky this time.”
After the game, Pedroia still couldn’t shake how strange it was to see Papelbon 60 feet 6 inches from him.
“It was different,” Pedroia said. “Pap’s always going to be family to me. We’ve been through a lot together. He did great things for us here. It was a little different. I hope he does bad the next couple games but he saves every game for the rest of his life.”
The experience was foreign but fun, Papelbon said.
“I would say it was more fun than strange, like playing against your brother in the backyard,” Papelbon said. “Those guys are some of my best friends in the world.’’
Right on track
Shane Victorino and Will Middlebrooks are both on track to be activated once their respective stints on the disabled list are up. Victorino (hamstring) will be available June 5 and Middlebrooks (low back spasms) will be available June 8. Both will go on rehab assignments before they return. Victorino’s could start as soon as this weekend.
“Everything’s trending the right way as far as their recovery, and we’ll look to get each on a rehab assignment before that,” said Farrell.
Heading into a National League ballpark (Philadelphia) for the first time this season Wednesday, the Red Sox likely will make another move, adding a position player.
Jackie Bradley Jr. is the likely candidate for the call-up. Since being sent to Triple A, Bradley has hit .360 with two home runs and nine RBIs, playing all three outfield positions. He went on the disabled list May 4 with biceps tendinitis, but since returning May 17, he has hit .438 (14 for 32) with a home run and six RBIs.
Jacoby Ellsbury, Pedroia, and John Lackey were among several Red Sox to be treated by Dr. Lewis Yocum, who died Tuesday. He was 65 (Obituary, B12).
“There’s a lot more than that, just in here, guys that he’s seen,” Ellsbury said. He’s affected a lot of lives, helped a lot of careers, and he’s definitely going to be missed.’’
After initially being diagnosed with bruised ribs after diving for a ball in May 2010, Ellsbury sought a second opinion from Yocum, who discovered that Ellsbury’s ribs had been fractured and that the injury had occurred a month earlier in a collision with third baseman Adrian Beltre. Ellsbury played just 18 games that season, but 158 the next.
“He’s an awesome doctor but a great person,” Ellsbury said.
Pedroia saw Yocum in 2010 when he went on the disabled list with a broken foot. After performing the surgery, Yocum advised him to be patient, take the recovery slowly, and keep the long run in mind. He has played in 300 games since, rarely taking off days.
“He was unbelievable,” Pedroia said. “First class. I just found out earlier today and it’s tough. He was pretty special to a lot of people.”
Marathon bombing victim Jeff Bauman and his rescuer, Carlos Arredondo, threw out the first pitches. From his wheelchair Bauman, who lost both of his legs in the bombing, threw to Jarrod Saltalamacchia. Arredondo pitched to Ortiz.Julian Benbow can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org