Nick will cover it in Beat Farming tomorrow, but I wanted to mention a bit about Ellsbury and Buchholz's performances in Pawtucket today since I happened to go to the game.
First of all, it was ideal baseball weather, and my spontaneous decision to attend couldn't have worked out better. In addition to Ellsbury and Buchholz, I got to see Daniel Bard, Junichi Tazawa, and my boyfriend 4EVA Jose Iglesias.
/pats self on back
Anyway, Buchholz was clearly on a pitch count around 40, as he only went 2 1/3 innings. He walked the first batter, allowed a single to the second, and walked the cleanup hitter to give the Syracuse Chiefs (Nationals' affiliate) the bases loaded with only one out. Clay induced a flyout to shallow left, and struck out the last batter swinging to get out of the first.
The second innings was one-two-three, with a strikeout looking, and he got the leadoff hitter in the 3rd to ground out meekly before exiting the game. Beyond the numbers, I have to say he looked frustrated, slapping at the ball a number of times when Ryan Lavarnway threw it back to him. Considering that he started rough and then retired his last six consecutively, I also think he would have been fine to go a few more innings were it needed.
Ellsbury went 1-4 with a single (video above; apologies for my hand getting in the way briefly). He worked a couple of long counts, and ran well. He made every play that came to him in the outfield, and really the only sour note was a double play after a leadoff single from Nate Spears in the 7th. He looked like himself; I have no reason to think he wouldn't be back with the big club after the All-Star Break.
- Jose Iglesias is dreamy.
- Nate Spears was player of the game, hooking a two-run homer inside the foul pole in right to go along with a couple of nice plays in the field.
- Daniel Bard looked great, recording two strikeouts in an easy 8th inning.
- Junichi Tazawa looked greater, recording three strikeouts in the 9th.