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Clay Buchholz avoids ligament damage, hits disabled list

An MRI shows Clay Buchholz' UCL is fine. But with his elbow sore, the Red Sox are risking nothing, and sending him to the disabled list all the same.

Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

It's a classic case of good news, bad news. The good news: Clay Buchholz suffered no ligament damage in Friday night's game against the Yankees. The bad news: after his elbow tightened up, he'll hit the disabled list all the same.

It's being characterized by "the best news we could have hoped for," and in some aspects that's true. Clay Buchholz is not doomed to Tommy John Surgery. He might seek the opinion of the infamous Dr. James Andrews, but at the moment, the plan is for Buchholz to take a week off throwing. That'll mean a missed start or two at least, but with the All-Star break this coming week, there are worse periods of time to hit the disabled list.

But on the other hand...this is Clay Buchholz we're talking about. As talented as he is as a pitcher, there's no denying he deserves the "injury prone" label. And it's not just because he gets hurt easily, but because seemingly minor issues become major ones without warning. Here, for instance, is our initial post on the neck injury that cost Clay Buchholz the second half of 2013 and likely left him the mess he was in 2014.

That last bit is the real kicker. Even if Buchholz is back on the mound and pitching in two weeks, it's hardly certain he'll be the same Clay Buchholz who left. There's some threshold out there at which point the injuries he suffers are minor enough that they don't undo him completely, and the two-week variety likely come in well below that threshold. But even with the good news, there's still plenty to worry about for a Red Sox team that didn't really need anymore problems