BOSTON -- His Game 3 start wasn’t necessarily ideal, but if you’d been told Clay Buchholz would go four innings and only give up two runs in a postseason game back in July, you’d have been a fool not to take it.
Had the game not been do-or-die, it’s fair to assume the righty might have worked deeper into the game and continued his string of strong outings.
But most importantly, Buchholz gained his confidence back and was able to maintain some level of consistency in the second half -- and handle adversity better than ever before in his MLB career.
“Regardless how deep the hole is that you dug yourself, you can dig out of it,” Buchholz said. “I knew that while digging that hole -- not trying to dig -- but I knew it. Nobody’s out until it’s over.
“I was glad that I could be a part of this team to help make this push to get in the spot that we were in. It’s a shame that we didn’t make more of it.”
This season could be Buchholz’s last if the Red Sox don’t pick up his option for 2017. Rick Porcello, David Price, Steven Wright, Drew Pomeranz and Eduardo Rodriguez all appear to be in Dave Dombrowski’s future plans, making Buchholz the odd man out.
He has proven he can be a solid middle-reliever or long reliever, though. And given ample time, able to serve as a solid spot-starter.
Either way, Buchholz’s 2017 should be far more stable due to his triumphs after his failures in 2016.