The face pictured above isn’t a face that is all that recognizable, but the name certainly is. His name is Dr. James Andrews, and when a star player of any fan’s favorite team goes to visit him, it is rarely good news. This is exactly what Boston Red Sox fans heard early Sunday morning, when it was reported that Clay Buchholtz will be heading to Birmingham, Ala., to get a second opinion from Dr. Andrews.
Buchholz has not pitched since June 8 with nech/shoulder/trap soreness. Despite MRI’s showing no structural damage, Buchholtz continues to have setback after setback. It seems each time he feels good after a long-toss session and is cleared to throw a bullpen, his session is cut short due to discomfort and the process starts over again.
Buchholz missed time at the end of the 2012 season with shoulder trouble, and despite being an incredible 9-0 with a ERA of 1.71, he has shown signs the shoulder may not have healed completely.
He strained an AC joint after reportedly sleeping wrong one night, forcing him to miss a start earlier this season, and with the “new” injury to the trap, it seems it could all be tied to the struggles at the end of last season.
While Dr. Andrews is as good as they come in the world of sports medicine, he often winds up having to perform season-ending surgeries on athletes. While it is too early to count Buchholz out, the mere fact he will be visiting Dr. Andrews is a grim sign.