The Red Sox have lost five straight games, are four games under .500, but are still only 3.5 games out of first place in the AL East entering Wednesday night’s game with the Toronto Blue Jays, the second of a three-game set at Fenway Park.
Clay Buchholz, who has struggled with consistency this season, has the chance to turn things around tonight against Toronto, whom he has a 10-5 record against in 18 career starts with a 2.52 ERA.
Last time we saw him, Buchholz had a solid outing against the Minnesota Twins on May 15, allowing three runs on 10 hits with three walks and six strikeouts. He is 2-3 in eight starts this season with a 6.17 ERA.
Adam Lind has faced Buchholz the most times of any batter in Buchholz’s career, hiting .326 with two home runs and five RBIs in 43 at bats. Jose Bautista has hit .314 in his career against Buchholz in 35 at bats, while Edwin Encarancion, who hit two home runs in last night’s game, only has one hit in 26 plate appearances.
On the mound for the Blue Jays is Drew Hutchison, who threw his first career shutout his last time out, allowing just three hits to the Texas Rangers in a 2-0 win on May 16. This season, Hutchison is 2-3 with a 3.64 ERA in nine starts.
Only two Red Sox hitter have faced Hutchison in the pitcher’s young career: Mike Napoli and David Ortiz, who each have three plate appearances against him. Neither has a hit, but Napoli does have two walks.