Breaking my self-imposed silence for a moment to congratulate Clay Buchholz on a stellar start last night. I guess you could group him among my (several) pitching binkies, but I was anxious they would send Buch to the 'pen for Daisuke's return. That would've been the wrong move, and last night's start shows why.
Before his no-hitter, Buch had made just 61 professional starts, and in some ways his development as a player has been a victim of his obvious talent. He had some major missteps as he tried to do a professional's job as a young, green kid, but it appears his time in Pawtucket and changes in his off-season regimen have given him more muscle and poise. This year will make or break the scouting report on Clay Buchholz, and is his first real chance to show us what he's made of as a part of a regular pitching rotation. It could potentially derail him for good to mess with that routine now.
He started off this season shaky, and continues to have blips like his interminable first inning against the Rays two Saturdays ago, but I love what I'm seeing from him so far this season in terms of steady improvement from start to start. If last night's performance is any indication of the kind of production we can get from him on a regular basis this season, the Sox made a no-brainer move shifting Wake instead of Buch to make room for Dice.