Clay Buchholz injury: Red Sox RHP 'close' to returning

USA TODAY Sports

Red Sox ace Clay Buchholz is throwing again and he feels close to fully recovered from the neck injury that has sidelined him for most of June.

Red Sox starting pitcher Clay Buchholz threw from 100 feet on Wednesday and he feels that he is "getting close" to normal in his recovery from the neck strain that landed him on the DL, according to Ian Browne of MLB.com.

"It's finally turned a corner actually," Buchholz told Browne. "I feel like I'm finally getting close to feeling pretty much normal now. So the last few days of throwing are encouraging. Like I said, I'm finally able to clear my head a little bit and go about it as just getting back to getting off the mound". According to Browne, Buchholz will have to work up to 120-foot long toss before the team will clear him to throw off the mound. Buchholz was optimistic that he would reach that mark in the next few days. Buchholz has been one the best pitchers in the American League when healthy this season. In 12 starts and 84 1/3 total innings, he has the lowest ERA in the league at 1.71 and a record of 9-0. However, he has been out since June 2 with this neck injury and his replacement, Allen Webster, who is one of Boston's top prospects, has struggled badly in his place. Webster has a 9.50 ERA in two starts in place of the injured Buchholz.

If the Red Sox ace is any judge, it may not be too long before he is back in the rotation again. Buchholz told Browne, "As far as the rehab stuff goes, me personally, if I felt good in the first start, I would ask him [manager John Farrell] just to throw me back in there."

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