Jonathan Papelbon celebrates his 13th save of the season. (AP Photo)
The Red Sox won the game and series against the Rays last night, however, they may have lost two key players in the process. Clay Buchholz, who has been struggling with lingering back issues left the game after only 81 pitches. It's a shame to see Clay with an injury such as this, especially since it's a back issue, because he's been pitching so well for the Sox. Over the past two months he's stymied opposing hitters, with them hitting just .204 in May and .234 in June.
It's a nagging back that's been the same since last year, I feel like I was in a better position tonight to come out a little early and not put anymore stress on my body than I had to. The way we're playing right now, nobody wants to go on the DL. That was my first thought, I've got to get through five innings. -Clay Buchholz
The other player to go down was Jed Lowrie, who said he felt like his shoulder came out of the socket while striking out with the bases loaded last night. Yikes. Jed was a pleasent suprise early on for the Red Sox, as his hot bat forced his way into the everyday lineup. He also spawned one of funniest Twitter Handles of 2011, JedLowrieLegend - which is basically a Chuck Norris rip-off, but pretty damn funny, as attested by this DL tweet.
Jed has noticeably cooled down though. He was hitting .368 in April, but has steadily seen his average drop hitting just .261 in May, and .114 in June. Marco Scutaro, who basically lost his starting job to Lowrie, is the one now swinging the hot bat, and in 29 AB's in June he's hitting .379, so in reality this may be an upgrade for the Sox. A little competition never hurt too, and with both of their infield versatility, Tito should be able to find a way to get both of them AB's when healthy.