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MIN@BOS: Buchholz hurls seven strong vs. Twins

Clay Buchholz and Chris Seddon each debuted in 2007, but their career trajectory entering Friday's matchup at Progressive Field could not be any more different.

Nearly five years later, Seddon will make the sixth start of his career, and second of the season, for Cleveland against the Red Sox, who are mired in a three-game losing streak. Buchholz threw a no-hitter in the second start of his career, two days before Seddon debuted for the Marlins, and has been a factor in the Boston rotation every year since.

Now, with Seddon attempting to make his third shot in the big leagues stick, Buchholz is once again pitching like the super-prospect he always was. Over his last four starts, the 27-year-old has a 1.20 ERA, but only one win to show for it.

"I feel good. You've got to have a little bit of confidence," Buchholz said after throwing eight innings of two-run ball against the Tigers on July 30 for his only win of the stretch. "Going out there and throwing well builds confidence and adds to what you already have."

If Seddon is looking for confidence, he must look past his 7.11 career ERA accumulated in a brief stint with the Marlins, 14 relief appearances with the Mariners and his return to the Major Leagues this season with the Tribe. In his most recent appearance, two days after he started a game for the first time since 2007, he did his job.

Seddon allowed four runs on seven hits and three walks over 4 1/3 innings Sunday against Detroit, then entered in the seventh inning Tuesday against the Twins with runners on the corners and two out and escaped Joe Smith's jam.

But manager Manny Acta saw positives in Seddon's first start, in which he took a no-decision after receiving offensive support overtaken by a Miguel Cabrera walk-off homer.

"I wish I could've kept us in it a little better," said Seddon. "I was a little up in the zone, but that's something I can improve on next time."

Boston: Papi eyes return against Tribe
David Ortiz said earlier in the week he would like to return Sunday for the series finale in Cleveland, and the Red Sox will have a better idea of whether that is possible after the slugger runs the bases prior to Friday's game.

"Then we should know where he really is," said manager Bobby Valentine. "[Wednesday] he said [there was no] stiffness, felt he could do a lot of things."

The designated hitter did agility work on the field Thursday and took batting practice in the cage as he rehabs from a right Achilles injury that kept him out since July 16, with Boston going 9-14 in his absence.

Cleveland: Donald homers in return to big leagues
Acta said Jason Donald would get regular playing time upon returning to Cleveland after Travis Hafner landed on the disabled list, and Donald made the most of it, hitting a leadoff home run in his first Major League at-bat since July 4.

Donald was on the Cleveland's Opening Day roster, but he hit only .188 (9-for-48) in 18 games for the Indians with limited playing time before he was sent to Triple-A Columbus, where he hit .277 with 18 doubles, three triples, four homers and 31 RBIs in 46 games. Donald went 1-for-4 with two runs and two RBIs in his Thursday's 5-3 win against the Red Sox.

"Donald is going to get some playing time at third base," Acta said. "He could also move over to second and occasionally the outfield, if we need him. Right now, with [Jose] Lopez not being here, he'll probably get most of his at-bats playing third."

Worth noting
• Red Sox reliever Andrew Bailey made his second rehab appearance in as many days Thursday, allowing one hit and striking out two in a scoreless inning for Triple-A Pawtucket. The 28-year-old threw a 1-2-3 inning Wednesday and allowed one run over five innings in five rehab outings, walking one and striking out nine as he recovers from a Spring Training thumb injury.

• Adrian Gonzalez has reached safely in each of his past 16 games, going deep Thursday to give him a .406 average and 29 RBIs since the All-Star break.

• Carlos Santana's fifth-inning single Thursday gave him 22 RBIs in his past 22 games. Comments