BOSTON — The Boston Red Sox team doctor says starting pitcher Clay Buchholz’s back injury should heal on its own, but there is no timetable on when the righthander could return.
Dr. Tom Gill says Buchholz has a stress fracture in his spine. He says the injury is stable and Buchholz has responded to treatment and is improving.
Gill said Tuesday that it’s possible Buchholz could still return to the rotation this season, but Buchholz won’t be cleared to even throw again until he completes a structured rehabilitation program.
In Monday night’s game Daniel Bard’s scoreless inning streak ended. The Boston reliever’s run of more than two months without allowing a run ended on Asdrubal Cabrera’s two-run homer in the eighth inning of the Indians’ 9-6 win over the Red Sox.
The ball to the right-field corner was initially ruled a single, but the umpires reviewed it and after a few minutes waved around Cabrera and Jason Kipnis, who led off the inning with a single.
“It looked like it hit off the top of the wall and came back in,” Bard said. “But I guess further review showed that it hit off a lady’s knee. So it looks like they got it right. It’s still tough to call.”
Bard’s scoreless streak ended at 26 1-3 innings. He was tagged for three runs in the inning, two coming on Cabrera’s shot that Bard hoped bounced off the wall.
Bard (1-5) hadn’t given up a run since Cabrera’s RBI double in a loss to the Indians on May 23 in Cleveland.
“I don’t really care about it. It went longer than I probably ever expected it would,” Bard said. “I’m all about trying to help the team win and tonight I didn’t do that. Streak or no streak, we’ve just got to move forward.”
Cabrera hit two of Cleveland’s four home runs as the Indians won for just the third time in their last 11 games.
Travis Hafner and Kipnis also homered for Cleveland.
“As a staff tonight, we paid for our mistakes,” Boston manager Terry Francona said.
Jarrod Saltalamacchia had a broken-bat two-run homer and Carl Crawford had a solo homer, double and scored two runs for Boston, which was coming off a 20-6 record in July — its first 20-win month since May 2007.
Bard’s streak was the longest active in the majors. It was the first run he allowed after 25 scoreless appearances.
After Kipnis singled leading off the eighth, Cabrera hit a fly ball down the right field line that hooked around the Pesky Pole and caromed off what looked like the top of the wall to outfielder Josh Reddick. Replays appeared to show the ball hitting beyond the padding on the top of the approximately 5-foot wall and bouncing back into play.
It was ruled a homer, which broke a 5-all tie.
“I’ve had a little bit of luck to get to this point. It went longer than I thought it would,” Bard said. “That’s baseball. It all comes back around. There’s things you can control and things you can’t. I probably shouldn’t have made that pitch.”
Rafael Perez (4-1) pitched one inning of scoreless relief for the win.
The Indians started a seven-game road trip against division leaders. After four against the AL East-leading Red Sox, they are scheduled to play three in Texas against the West-leading Rangers this weekend.
After the Indians had grabbed a 5-3 lead in the sixth, Saltalamacchia hit his improbable two-run homer off starter Josh Tomlin in the bottom half. With the end of his bat flying down the first-base line, the ball carried into the seats in right. Indians first baseman LaPorta appeared to be staring into the Red Sox dugout in disbelief as Saltalamacchia rounded the bases.
Trailing 3-2 in the sixth, Cleveland grabbed the lead on the consecutive homers by Cabrera and Hafner against starter John Lackey. Cabrera hit his into the deepest part of Fenway Park’s right field, a drive that carried into the first row of seats over a short wall for his 18th of the season after Kipnis doubled. Hafner then belted his 10th into Boston’s bullpen.
Lackey, who had won his last four starts for his best stretch of the season, gave up five runs and eight hits, struck out five and didn’t walk anyone in 6 2-3 innings.
Boston took a 3-1 lead by scoring a run in the second and two in the third.
Kosuke Fukudome’s RBI single made it 3-2.
Marco Scutaro, who left the game with what the club called dizziness in the fourth inning, made it 1-0 with an RBI single.
Michael Brantley’s RBI double tied it in the third.
The Red Sox added two in third on Kevin Youkilis’ RBI triple off the center-field wall and Crawford’s homer.
Tomlin allowed five runs and 10 hits in six innings.
NOTES: Indians manager Manny Acta said RF Shin-Soo Choo, out since late June with a broken left thumb, will likely take BP on the field later this week. Acta would not talk about any rehab dates yet. “He’s got a couple of steps before that,” Acta said. Choo was Cleveland’s top hitter the past two seasons. … Boston utility INF Jed Lowrie, on the 15-day DL since June 17 with a strained left shoulder, started a rehab assignment with Triple-A Pawtucket on Monday. He went 0-for-2. … Acta held a brief team meeting before the game. “We have a lot of kids that have never been here, a different ballpark, just for them to really take advantage of it with extra batting practice and all that,” he said. “Just let the guys know that this is fun, a couple of games out and two mon ths to go. In a way I needed to let them know we’re still in it, but we needed to get back to what got us to where we’re at.” … It was the fifth time this season the Indians hit consecutive home rs.