BOSTON – The Boston Red Sox plan to start Tim Wakefield instead of an ailing Clay Buchholz on Saturday against the New York Yankees.
Buchholz, who is 17-7 with a 2.33 ERA, has stiffness in his lower back, the team announced Friday. Wakefield is 4-10 with a 5.20 ERA.
The Yankees arrived in Boston for a season-ending three-game series beginning Friday night, but the opener was rained out and rescheduled as part of a day-night doubleheader Saturday.
New York still moved a half-game ahead of Tampa Bay, which lost to Kansas City 7-0, for first place in the AL East. The Red Sox were eliminated from playoff contention early this week.
Wakefield will face Andy Pettitte (11-3) in the 4:10 p.m. opener with Daisuke Matsuzaka (9-6), Friday's scheduled starter, facing A.J. Burnett (10-15) in the 9:05 p.m. nightcap.
John Lackey (13-11) is scheduled to pitch for the Red Sox on Sunday. Yankees manager Joe Girardi said he didn't know yet who would start that game for him.