BOSTON -- It seems more and more unlikely Red Sox ace Clay Buchholz will return before the All-Star break.
The right-hander will need two rehab starts before returning to Boston's roster and Buchholz is still in the beginning stages of a throwing program he began after being placed on the disabled list.
"He threw out to 60 feet [Tuesday], which is basically the first step or the first day we have mapped out in the throwing program," manager John Farrell said. "No issues. The throwing program will be outlined to 60, 90, 120 at a varying number of throws or a progressive number of throws before we get him on the mound. We don't have a specific date right now that he would get back on the mound."
He will join the club on its West Coast road trip beginning Friday, meaning a rehab start before the All-Star break is not likely.
With a 9-0 record and 1.71 ERA, Buchholz has been dominant when healthy, but an awkward throw to first base he made during his last start on June 8 caused pain near his trapezius muscle, located at the base of the neck.
He originally tried to avoid a stint on the DL, but the injury hasn't healed as fast as he hoped. An MRI last week revealed no structural damage.
In Buchholz's absence, rookie Allen Webster will fill the rotation void. In four starts this season, he's 0-2 with a 9.50 ERA.
Michael Periatt is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @Michael Periatt. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.