It’s just not happening. Not only are guys getting hurt, but they aren’t getting better.
Today’s bad news on the Red Sox injury front concerns Clay Buchholz, who will now be missing his Friday start against the Rangers and will instead pitch a rehab game for Pawtucket. That means the earliest Buchholz will pitch for Boston is July 21 when the Sox are in Oakland to play a businessman special.
Now it’s important to keep that date in mind because on June 27th, the night after Buchholz first strained his hammy, there was a thought that he might make his next start, or at the very worst, miss one start and pitch again on July 6th at Tampa. Well, when he missed that start, it was widely assumed, or at least assumed by me, that he would be GREAT to go when the Sox came back from the break. Rusty perhaps, but ready for sure.
This wouldn’t be such a big deal if it weren’t for the fact that nobody on this team seems to be healing ahead of schedule, or even on schedule. I guess there is hope that Pedroia might return a bit earlier than expected but Ellsbury has obviously blown his recovery timetable to shreds, Beckett will be barely make it back in July from a May injury, Lowell is Absent With Leave, and Hermida still hasn’t begun a rehab assignment. And most importantly, at one point it looked like Victor Martinez might be able to avoid the DL. Now, it looks like a week on the shelf will be at least three weeks and even that may be too optimistic.
Now the Sox did manage to survive two weeks at half-strength, but how much longer can this continue? After all, they are already down three games to Tampa so they can’t really afford to just muddle through the next two weeks and let time and games slip away.
My thesis for success was this team just needed to make it to the break. And when play resumed, they would have Martinez and Buchholz and enough other guys to deal with Texas and a ten-game West coast trip. But it is looking more and more like the Sox will be playing short-handed well into their upcoming trip and who knows what shape the club will be in when the cavalry finally arrives in force. It will be a pity if the rescue party arrives and there is no army left to reinforce.