The Red Sox have quietly moved on from the longest tenured pitcher on their staff, Clay Buchholz. Boston traded Buchholz to Philadelphia for minor league second baseman Josh Tobias. It seemed that Buchholz was expendable when the Red Sox made the blockbuster trade for Chris Sale from the White Sox. The Red Sox rotation will be now be set with pitchers like Sale, David Price, Rick Porcello, Steven Wright, and Eduardo Rodriguez.
Philadelphia gets a nice pitcher to add to their rotation of Aaron Nola, Jerad Eickhoff, Jeremy Hellickson, and Vincent Velasquez. Joel Sherman, from the New York Post, believes this move is on par with how the Phillies have approached this offseason as well as next offseason:
— Joel Sherman (@Joelsherman1) December 20, 2016
Todd Zolecki, a Phillies beat writer for MLB.com, sees the trade giving Philadelphia some flexibility should Buchholz struggle:
For those asking about Clay Buchholz trade: if he picks up where he left off in '16 he is a trade chip come July.
— Todd Zolecki (@ToddZolecki) December 20, 2016
This was a matter of Boston wanting to save money and just move on. Tobias is not a very highly touted prospect, according to the managing editor for Baseball America:
Josh Tobias is not in our Phillies Top 30 we are wrapping up for Prospect Handbook.
— JJ Cooper (@jjcoop36) December 20, 2016
Clay Buchholz had a lot of hype when he first came up with the Red Sox. Boston drafted him with a compensatory pick they received when Pedro Martinez signed with the Mets. Buchholz no-hit the Baltimore Orioles on September 1st, 2007. Consistency was the major problem for Buchholz, the former Red Sox pitcher never pitched more than 189 1/3 innings in a season and his ERA never translated from one season to the next.
This past season, Buchholz had an ERA of 4.78 with a 1.33 WHIP and only 93 strikeouts in 139.1 innings. An example of inconsistency, Buchholz had a 3.26 ERA with a 1.21 WHIP and 107 strikeouts in 113.1 innings in 2015.
Buchholz was the last holdout of the championship pitchers for the Red Sox. He outlasted John Lackey, Jon Lester, Josh Beckett, and Daisuke Matsuzaka.