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Buchholz could rehab as soon as Thursday

OAKLAND -- Clay Buchholz is scheduled to throw a bullpen session Sunday at Coliseum as he continues to recover from right shoulder bursitis that's kept him sidelined since June 8.

Red Sox manager John Farrell said Buchholz will also throw at some point while in New York as a member of the American League's roster at the All-Star Game, though he will merely serve as a spectator.

A Minor League rehab start will follow soon after, which could come as soon as Thursday, when Double-A Portland returns to play at home.

Farrell said he hopes Buchholz will return to the starting rotation before the end of July, though he's yet to settle on what the rotation will look like coming out of the break, which starts with 10 games against American League East opponents.

"Getting Clay back will be a huge boost for us, and that's coming," Farrell said. "Returning to full health will be a key for us."

Shortstop Stephen Drew is also slated to return following the break, though his rehab schedule and how many games he plays in the Minors has yet to be determined.

"He has the right to say none and to just rejoin us," Farrell said. "That's a conversation that I need to sit down with Stephen and have a bit more directly with and outline what we're trying to get accomplished."

Buccholz went 9-0 with a 1.71 ERA in 12 starts as an early frontrunner in the AL Cy Young Award conversation prior to his injury, striking out a career-high 25 percent of the batters he faced.

Drew has batted .233 this season with 31 RBIs and 28 walks as the team's everyday shortstop. Farrell has said Jose Iglesias will switch back to third base upon Drew's return.

Jeff Kirshman is an associate reporter for
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