Red Sox place Clay Buchholz on DL with neck strain

USA TODAY Sports

The right-hander's latest bullpen session was neck-pain-free, but Boston wants to give him a few extra days of rest before sending him back out to the mound.

The Boston Red Sox finally took the plunge and put Clay Buchholz on the 15-day disabled list with a neck strain Tuesday night. While the move sounds bad for the Sox at first blush, it was actually a calculated move to give the right-hander three extra days of rest before returning to the rotation, reports Alex Speier of WEEI.

Buchholz has been battling discomfort in his trapezius muscle for the last couple weeks. Because the right-hander hasn't taken the hill since June 8, Boston can backdate his time on the sidelines almost two weeks, meaning that he can be activated on June 25.

Had Buchholz had stayed off the DL, the earliest the Sox were planning on putting him back on the hill was June 22, so the team is essentially trading three days of rest for an extra roster spot. Right-hander Alex Wilson was recalled from Triple-A to temporarily take Buchholz's roster spot.

Buchholz threw a pain-free bullpen session between the games of Tuesday's doubleheader, so it's likely he could have started on Saturday against the Tigers. But Buchholz believes that the three extra days will help him "ease back" back into the rotation, adding: "what’s three extra days to be healthy the rest of the season...?".

Buchholz is in the midst of his best big-league season, posting a 1.71 ERA and 2.79 strikeout-to-walk ratio through his first 12 starts. If the right-hander can grab a win in his first start back next Tuesday, he'll join Tigers right-hander Max Scherzer in the exclusive 10-0 club.

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