BOSTON (CBS) — The Boston Red Sox will get two starting pitchers back over the next week, making their rotation a very crowded place to be.
Left-hander Felix Doubront will be activated from the 15-day disabled list and start Friday night against the Oakland Athletics, while Clay Buchholz has re-joined the team after a minor league rehab stint and will make his next start in the big leagues.
Doubront, who went on the DL on May 21 with a strained left shoulder, struck out 10 and allowed no hits over five innings in his last rehab outing for the Pawtucket Red Sox.
“His last start was much improved in terms of overall stuff,” Boston manager John Farrell said of Doubront on Thursday. “There was increased intensity, increased velocity, increased action to his pitches that are going to be required here. And he gets the ball [Friday].”
Doubront will take the mound for the suspended Brandon Workman, who is serving a six-game suspension for throwing behind Tampa Bay Rays third baseman Even Longoria back on May 30.
Farrell also said how impressed he was with Buchholz, who allowed two hits, walked two and struck out five in six innings for Pawtucket on Thursday.
“Today was very good,” Farrell said of Buchholz. “He was able to get up to nearly 90 pitches in six shutout innings of work. His changeup feel and execution was much improved, and the shape to his overall pitches was consistent, particularly with the way he threw his changeup. A lot of strikes.
“His start was one that we all felt was needed, but he went about it the right way and comes back to us with momentum,” said Farrell.
Farrell noted that there are many moving parts in Boston’s rotation and they won’t know when Buchholz will take the mound until this weekend. But if he pitches on his regular rest, Buchholz will likely take the mound Tuesday night against the Seattle Mariners.
Buchholz, who was placed on the disabled list on May 28 with a hyperextended knee, is 2-4 with a 7.02 ERA in 10 big league starts this season.
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With both Doubront and Buchholz returning, it’s uncertain what Farrell and the Red Sox will do with Workman and Rubby De La Rosa, who have both been impressive while filling in for the two injured starters. Both could find their way to the bullpen, though could return to the rotation should Buchholz or Doubront struggle.
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