Clay Buchholz

Monday’s Red Sox-Twins matchups: Clay Buchholz vs. Mike Pelfrey

June 01, 2015 - 4:03 am
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Just a week removed from their road series against the Twins, the Red Sox swap stadiums and host Minnesota at Fenway Park for a four-game series. In Monday's opener, Clay Buchholz will pitch opposite Mike Pelfrey for the second time in seven days. Buchholz has recorded quality outings in his last four starts, managing at least 7 1/3 innings in all but one of them. With just eight earned runs allowed in those most recent outings, the righty has brought down his season ERA from 6.03 to 4.33. But despite his success, Buchholz has received losses in each of his two latest starts, due to a lack of run support, and has a 2-6 record on the year. "That happens," Buchholz said. "I've gotten a lot of wins whenever I've given up four, five or six runs. It'll turn around." He pitched against the Twins on Tuesday and though he only gave up two earned runs, the Sox were only able to put one run of their own on the board. Before that, he hurled 7 1/3 innings vs. the Rangers on May 21 and again allowed just two earned runs in a game the Sox would lose 3-1. Historically, when facing Minnesota, Buchholz has 3-2 record in nine starts with a 4.02 ERA, giving up 25 earned runs over 56 innings. He's surrendered 60 hits in that time, including 16 doubles and two home runs, and the Twins have slashed .274/.335/.374 against him. Buchholz has posted a 1.429 WHIP against Minnesota with 20 walks and 50 strikeouts, good for a strikeout-to-walk ratio of 2.50 and an average of 8.0 strikeouts per nine innings. Pelfrey will see the Red Sox for the third time in his career, having registered a 1.93 ERA and a 1-0 record in his two prior appearances. He first faced Boston in 2009 for a seven-inning start in which he allowed just two earned runs. Pelfrey's second outing was Tuesday, his most recent start, when he pitched opposite Buchholz and gave up one earned run on five hits through another seven frames, walking one and striking out four. The win bumped his season record to 4-1 and his overall ERA to 2.77. "I thought early I threw a lot of pitches," Pelfrey said after the start. "There was a lot of foul balls, but I thought I was throwing a lot of strikes. I was going to my secondary stuff early. But then I kept going and starting more fastballs, and the big things was I was throwing them for strikes." The right-hander has held Boston to a .220/.250/.240 slash line when occupying the hill and walked two batters compared to his 10 strikeouts thus far. Pelfrey also has a 0.929 WHIP vs. the Sox and has conceded just one extra-base hit, a double, out of 11 total hits that he has allowed. This year Pelfrey has only relinquished more than two earned runs twice in nine total starts, once in his season opener on April 11 vs. the White Sox and again on May 14 against the Tigers, both on the road. Other than that, in 32 1/3 innings, he has kept a team from scoring once, held an opponent to one run four times and then granted two earned runs twice. Five of his starts have been for six-plus innings, and of 10 of his 49 hits given up so far were XBH. Twins vs. Buchholz (RHP) Torii Hunter (29 plate appearances): .167 AVG/.310 OBP/.208 SLG, 1 double, 5 walks, 4 strikeouts Joe Mauer (23): .368/.478/.526, 3 doubles, 1 RBI, 3 walks Brian Dozier (18): .188/.222/.250, 1 double, 1 RBI, 1 walk, 5 strikeouts Trevor Plouffe (18): .188/.278/.313, 2 doubles, 1 RBI, 2 walks, 5 strikeouts Kurt Suzuki (18): .500/.500/.611, 2 doubles, 3 RBIs, 1 strikeout Aaron Hicks (12): .182/.250/.273, 1 double, 1 RBI, 1 walk, 1 strikeout Eduardo Escobar (9): .333/.333/.444, 1 double, 2 strikeouts Eduardo Nunez (3): .500/.667/.500, 1 walk Eddie Rosario (3): .333/.333/.333 Danny Santana (3): .333/.333/.333, 1 strikeout Red Sox vs. Pelfrey (RHP) Hanley Ramirez (54 plate appearances): .200 AVG/.259 OBP/.260 SLG, 1 home run, 3 RBIs, 4 walks, 8 strikeouts Pablo Sandoval (20): .200/.200/.250, 1 double, 2 RBIs, 4 strikeouts David Ortiz (6): .200/.333/.400, 1 double, 1 walk, 1 strikeout Dustin Pedroia (6): .333/.333/.333, 1 strikeout Mookie Betts (3): .333/.333/.333 Mike Napoli (3): .500/.667/.500, 1 RBI, 1 walk Sandy Leon (2): 1.000/1.000/1.000 Xander Bogaerts has one strikeout in three plate appearances vs. Pelfrey. Rusney Castillo has one strikeout in two plate appearances vs. Pelfrey.