KANSAS CITY -- Clay Buchholz leaned against a wall outside the Red Sox's clubhouse late Friday afternoon and reflected on a 40-pitch mound session that has the right-hander pointed in the right direction.
"Everything is coming along," Buchholz said. "It feels like my arm is catching up to my body better."
Buchholz, who has been on the disabled list since June 9, with a neck strain, will throw a light side session on Sunday before the Red Sox depart Kansas City. He is plotting another light side session on Tuesday and said there's a possibility of a simulated game shortly thereafter if all goes well.
"I was able to throw all my pitches," said Buchholz, who threw 27 pitches in Houston on Tuesday. "I wasn't worried about location. It was more about extension. I was pretty close to the zone with all of them."
Buchholz has noticed improvement even while playing long toss.
"I can actually throw a ball with some effort rather than being scared to throw it," Buchholz said. "That's one significant change that I feel. It's definitely progressing."
Manager John Farrell watched the early portion of Buchholz's session.
"He's following the progression as it is outlined," Farrell said. "There are no restrictions as far as the intensity with which he's throwing. It's about getting the ball back in his hand and going through the repetitions."
Despite Buchholz's prolonged absence after he compiled a 9-0 mark with a 1.71 ERA through 12 starts, the Red Sox went into Friday's game with a two-game lead in the American League East.
"It tells me we have a deep and talented team," Farrell said. "We've had other guys step up in his absence. We've had contributions from a lot of guys, whether it's a pitcher or a position player."
Robert Falkoff is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.