Injuries and inconsistency have plagued pitcher Clay Buchholz throughout his career. Buchholz has been as good as 17-7 with a 2.33 ERA in 2010 to as weak as 8-11, 5.34 in 2014. In his 10 seasons with Boston, the overall numbers are good, with a mark of 81-61 and an ERA of 3.96 in the majors.
As for injuries, Buchholz has had them all, including a left hamstring strain and left knee hyperextension, a stress fracture in his back, bursitis in his right shoulder, a torn fingernail on his right hand, and esophagitis. As recently as 2015, Buchholz had what was a good season, cut short by an elbow injury. At the time of the injury, Buchholz had a 3.26 ERA and was showing the best command of his career when the elbow injury knocked him out of action after an outing against the Yankees on July 10th, causing him to miss the rest of the season.
Klentak told reporters that he expects Buchholz to be nothing but a starter, after Boston used him for 16 games in relief last season. The 32-year old made one start against Cleveland in the ALDS last year and lasted just four innings, giving up two runs and eventually taking the loss in the game. He did finish the regular season on a strong note though posting a 4-1 record with a 3.02 ERA in his final 14 appearances, which included eight starts. In his final five starts, Buchholz had a 3.14 ERA for the Red Sox.
To get Buchholz, the Phillies gave up second base prospect Josh Tobias, who had a breakout season with Lakewood prior to being promoted to Clearwater in late July. With Lakewood, Tobias hit .304 in 93 games and finished up with a .254 average in 34 games with the Threshers, for a combined mark of 9-69-.291/.362/.422 on the season. Tobias was a 10th round pick of the Phillies in the 2015 Draft.
Infielder Richie Shaffer, who was claimed off waivers from the Mariners earlier this offseason, was designated for assignment to make room for Buchholz on the 40-man roster.
Buchholz is in the final year of his contract and will be paid $13.5-million in 2017 before being eligible for free agency.