The Juice: Clay Buchholz returns with five scoreless innings in Red Sox victory

David Brown
Big League Stew

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The Boston Red Sox lowered their magic number to 10, getting five shutout innings from Clay Buchholz in a 2-0 victory at Tampa Bay. Buchholz had not pitched since June because of neck/shoulder issues, but he apparently shook off any rust in the bullpen warming up. He allowed three hits and one walk and struck out six on a pitch count. David Price gave the Rays a great effort, striking out nine and allowing two runs and three hits, but nobody could solve Buchholz or the Boston bullpen.

Via the Associated Press, catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia said of Buchholz:

''He looked great ... looked like he hadn't missed a day. To be able to go into a game like this after not pitching in a big league game for that long, keep your poise and just make it look like it's any other game, it's tough to do.''

• Jonny Gomes drove in Mike Napoli for Boston's first run.

• Closer Koji Uehara, picking up his third four-out save of the season, has retired 31 straight batters.

• Boston leads the Rays by 8 1/2 in the AL East. The Rays have lost 12 of 16 since Aug. 25.


Pirates 5, Rangers 4: Bucs closer Mark Melancon took everyone on a little ride in the ninth, and he was credited with a save and all, but, yeesh.

Cardinals 4, Brewers 2: It's funny to think that Milwaukee's Wily Peralta took a no-hitter into the sixth until Matt Holliday crashed it with a two-run homer, breaking a scoreless tie. Shelby Miller ended up pitching a better game.

Tigers 9, White Sox 1: Right-hander Rick Porcello goes the distance for the first time ever, leaving Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander as the only Tigers yet to throw complete games this season. Conor Gillaspie made three errors at third base for the Sox.

Dodgers 5, Diamondbacks 3 (11 inn.): Scott Van Slyke, speaking of sons of 1992 Pirates, shrunk the Dodgers' magic number to six with a game-ending homer.

Royals 6, Indians 3: Luke Hochevar struck out five as a bridge to closer Greg Holland. The Royals are 3 1/2 back of the Rays in the wild card race. There also are three other teams ahead of them.

Twins 4, Athletics 3: Oh my, what a turn of events. Josh Willingham launched his second home run of the game, a two-run shot in the eighth against Ryan Cook, to gut-punch the A's. But, the Rangers also lost so...

Braves 4, Marlins 3: The Braves won on a walkoff rundown, with catcher Brian McCann fielding a lucky bounce after a would-be wild pitch by closer Craig Kimbrel. That's so Marlins.

The pitch caromed off the backstop directly to McCann, who took advantage of the favorable bounce to start a 2-5-4 putout.

''An unfortunate bounce,'' Marlins manager Mike Redmond said.

''Awesome,'' Braves left fielder Evan Gattis said. ''Just like we drew it up.''

Yankees 7, Orioles 5: It's possible that Alfonso Soriano will get MVP votes for the Yankees. He hit two home runs, including a tiebreaking shot in the eighth, giving him 15 in 170 at-bats since coming over from the Cubs. Speaking of home runs: League leader Chris Davis hit No. 49.

Cubs 9, Reds 1: The Cubs also did this to the Pirates the past couple of years, stinging them for annoying losses. Possibly worse for the Reds, Tony Cingrani left the game with back spasms. Welington Castillo gave the Reds painful home run spasms — twice.

Nationals 6, Mets 3: With 18 games to play, the Nats are five games in the loss column behind the Reds for the last wild card spot. Jayson Werth hit a home run and two doubles for Washington, which has won six of seven.

''We kind of waited around too long,'' Werth said.

Padres 8, Phillies 2: Andrew Cashner: Good.

Rockies 9, Giants 8: Michael Cuddyer: Two home runs, including the go-ahead against Sergio Romo.

Angels 12, Blue Jays 6: Mark Trumbo went 5 for 5 with five runs scored, the first Angels player ever to do it.

Astros 13, Mariners 2: One win from 50!

Yasiel Puig makes it rain ice after the Dodgers win. #Puigice!

• The Twins are 19-8 against the AL West.

• Norichika Aoki of the Brewers struck out three times for the first time in his major league career. He came in fanning once every 17.2 at-bats, tops in the majors.

• There's only 2 1/2 weeks to go in the regular season.

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