The Red Sox will take a second shot at clinching the AL East when they send Clay Buchholz out against Yankees right-hander Bryan Mitchell on Wednesday night in the Bronx.
Buchholz is 8-10 with a 5.00 ERA and a 1.365 WHIP in 36 games (20 starts). On Wednesday, the 32-year-old right-hander went seven strong innings, giving up just one run, three hits and two walks with four strikeouts in a 5-1 win over the Orioles.
“I’ve been here before,” Buchholz said (via MLB.com). “I knew I wasn’t going to be bad all year. It was a stretch that I didn’t really know what was going on. I didn’t know how to fix it. I was trying too hard and overdoing a lot of things, overanalyzing. Yeah, it takes a couple of games to get some confidence going in the right direction. It’s fun pitching when everything is going good, especially when you’re winning.”
Against the Yankees, Buchholz is 6-9 with a 5.99 ERA and a 1.637 WHIP in 19 games (18 starts). In two games (one start) against New York this season, he is 1-0 with a 2.70 ERA and a 1.350 WHIP. His lone start vs. the Yankees came on Sept. 16, when he pitched six innings, allowing two runs, seven hits and two walks with two strikeouts in a 7-4 Sox win.
Mitchell is 1-2 with a 4.50 ERA and 1.722 WHIP in four starts. The 25-year-old was supposed to be on the Yankees’ Opening Day roster, but he injured his left big toe in his final spring training appearance and was placed on the DL. He came off the DL in August, rehabbed in the minors for a month, and rejoined the Yankees in early September. In his most recent start on Friday, Mitchell threw six innings, allowing three runs (one earned), six hits and four walks with two strikeouts in a 9-0 loss to Toronto.
“It’s not what you want, I mean, it’s frustrating,” Yankees manager Joe Girardi said (via MLB.com). “I thought Mitch pitched a pretty good game and probably should have given up just one run over the six innings. I thought he settled down after the first two innings pretty well, but we just couldn’t get anything going.”
Mitchell has posted a 6.00 ERA and a 1.583 WHIP in five games (one start) against the Red Sox, but he has yet to record a decision. His only start against the Sox came on Sept. 17 when he pitched just 4 2/3 innings, giving up four runs (three earned runs), five hits and one walk with three strikeouts.
Red Sox vs. Mitchell (RHP)
Xander Bogaerts is 3-for-6 with 2 doubles, 1 home run and 3 RBIs.
Mookie Betts is 1-for-4.
Jackie Bradley Jr. is 2-for-3 with 1 RBI, 1 walk and 1 strikeout.
Dustin Pedroia is 0-for-3 with 1 walk.
Travis Shaw is 1-for-4 with 2 strikeouts.
Andrew Benintendi is 1-for-2 with 1 double.
Brock Holt is 0-for-1 with 1 walk.
Sandy Leon is 0-for-2.
Deven Marrero is 0-for-2.
David Ortiz is 0-for-2 with 1 RBI and 1 strikeout.
Hanley Ramirez is 1-for-2.
Ryan Hanigan is 0-for-1 with 1 strikeout.
Bryan Holaday is 0-for-1.
Christian Vazquez is 0-for-1 with 1 strikeout.
Yankees vs. Buchholz (RHP)
Mark Teixeira (26 plate appearances): .161 AVG./.222 OBP/.355 SLG, 2 home runs, 7 RBIs, 3 walks, 8 strikeouts
Brett Gardner (35): .250/.294/.313, 2 doubles, 4 RBIs, 2 walks, 7 strikeouts
Billy Butler (22): .222/.318/.222, 1 RBI, 2 walks, 2 strikeouts
Aaron Hicks (15): .154/.267/.231, 1 double, 1 RBI, 2 walks, 1 strikeout
Jacoby Ellsbury (14): .167/.286/.167, 1 RBI, 2 walks, 1 strikeout
Brian McCann (13): .364/.462/.545, 2 doubles, 1 RBI, 2 walks, 3 strikeouts
Chase Headley (11): .400/.455/.900, 2 doubles, 1 home run, 3 RBIs, 2 strikeouts
Starlin Castro is 1-for-7 with 2 strikeouts.
Did Gregorius is 3-for-7 with 1 double.
Gary Sanchez is 1-for-3 with 1 double and 2 RBIs.
Mason Williams is 2-for-2.
Austin Romine is 1-for-1.