Clay Buchholz allowed a career-high 10 runs in Sunday's loss to the Yankees. (Elsa/Getty Images)

Closing Time: Clay Buchholz's poor outing dooms Red Sox in blowout loss to Yankees

Ryan Hannable
April 12, 2015 - 7:32 pm
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Maybe thinking Clay Buchholz is back to his 2013 pre-injury form was a little premature. After dominating the Phillies on Opening Day, the Red Sox' right-hander struggled out of the gates allowing seven first inning runs (six earned) en route to allowing a career-high 10 runs in the Yankees' 14-4 win Sunday night to avoid a series sweep. The Yankees batted around in the first inning as Buchholz allowed a lead off walk to Jacoby Ellsbury, followed by a perfectly executed hit-and-run single by Brett Gardner with Ellsbury advancing to third. Carlos Beltran then hit into a fielders choice for the Yankees' first run. Then, following a Mark Teixeira walk, Brian McCann reached on a Mike Napoli error, as he bobbled the ball on a play going to his right, which loaded the bases. Alex Rodriguez would clear the bases with a double to left center field, giving the Yankees a 4-0 lead, and things would only get worse for Buchholz. He then allowed back-to-back home runs to Chase Headley and Stephen Drew to close out the first inning scoring. In a normal situation, without a depleted bullpen following Friday's 19-inning game and the inability to recall a pitcher, Buchholz may have been removed from the game, but he needed to take some heat off the bullpen. He actually settled down retiring seven of the next eight batters after the first, but struggled again in the fourth, allowing three more runs and thus being removed from the game in the inning. Buchholz finished by going 3 1/3 innings, allowing 10 runs (nine earned) on nine hits, while walking two and striking out three. It was his shortest outing since going just three innings May 26 in Atlanta last season, and he went on the disabled list after the start. It's also worth mentioning the right-hander failed to back up the bases on a few occasions in the fourth inning. Yankees starter Masahiro Tanaka breezed through the first three innings, but had trouble in the fourth, throwing 38 pitches and allowing three runs. He finished the night going five innings, allowing four runs on four hits, which was enough to earn the win. SWENSON GRANITE WORKS ROCK SOLID PERFORMER OF THE GAME: The Yankees' bats broke out in a big way by totaling 16 hits and were led by Headley, who went 3-for-5 with 3 RBI, including the first inning home run. Here is what went wrong (and right) in the Red Sox' second loss of the season: WHAT WENT WRONG -- Aside from Buchholz's poor first inning, he didn't get any help from his defense, namely Napoli at first. The out Napoli did make on Beltran's fielders choice was on a very poor throw to second, which Xander Bogaerts made a great pick on, and then his error -- both uncharacteristic of Napoli. -- Reliever Tommy Layne struggled in the sixth, allowing three runs, which could have been even more if not for a tremendous diving catch by Mookie Betts in center field and then doubling Rodriguez off second base. He walked in a run to account for one of the three. -- Edward Mujica, who allowed the game-tying home run Friday night in the ninth inning, allowed another homer, as Brian McCann took him deep for a solo shot to right in the eighth inning. -- Dustin Pedroia did not reach base in the game, going 0-for-4 and finishes the road trip batting .240. He is 3-for-24 since his two home run performance on Opening Day. WHAT WENT RIGHT -- The Red Sox scored three times in the fourth inning, highlighted by a two-run double by Bogaerts. He continued his hot start to the season by going 2-for-4, and is now hitting .407 with 6 RBI through the first six games of the year. -- Hanley Ramirez crushed a two-out, solo home run to right center in the fifth. It was his third home run of the season. He finished the game 1-for-3, and is now batting .320 with 7 RBI on the year. -- Napoli recorded his first hit of the season in the eighth inning, a single up the middle. He's now 1-for-18 to start the season. -- The bullpen did a decent job picking up Buchholz allowing four runs over 5 2/3 innings. Although Layne and Mujica allowed runs, Craig Breslow pitched a scoreless 1 2/3 innings while Anthony Varvaro also added a scoreless inning of relief.

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