Coffee and Clippings: Red Sox Eye Home-Field Advantage

Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich) of discusses Buchholz’s well pitched game last night despite a lack of velocity as the Red Sox chase home-field advantage in the postseason…

Clay Buchholz’s fastball seemed a tick off Friday night, even accounting for the possibility that radar guns at Camden Yards were off.

But the Red Sox righty still pitched well enough – better than well enough – in a 12-3 win over the Orioles. The night wound up as his longest start since May 22: seven innings, three runs, four strikeouts and no walks.

“I’m ready to go physically,” Buchholz said. “It was a little bit of a grind out there today. I didn’t have the best stuff out there. Yeah, that’s just the way it goes sometimes. But I feel like everybody is ready to go. It’s a neat time of year to be around knowing that your season is going to be extended. Now it’s just a waiting game to see who we’ll play, when and where, and I think it’s going to be a lot of fun for us.”

Brian MacPherson (@brianmacp) of the Providence Journal talks about the personality of Koji Uehara and its influence on the other Red Sox players…

 A season’s worth of high-fives only scratch the surface of the force that is the personality of Koji Uehara.

“I don’t think guys think of him as someone who has come over from another continent,” fellow reliever Craig Breslow said. “They think of him as one of the guys.”

“He’s one of the coolest people I’ve ever met,” lefty Drake Britton said.

Uehara is far from the first Japanese-born pitcher to suit up for the Red Sox. But he’s the first Japanese-born pitcher to ingratiate himself with the team the way he has this season.

Mark Feinsand (@FeinsandNYDN) of the NY Daily News reports that the Dodgers are not interested in signing Robinson Cano…

As Robinson Cano approaches free agency next month, many expect a fierce bidding war to erupt between the Yankees and Dodgers.

Everybody other than the Dodgers, that is.

According to a high-ranking National League executive with knowledge of the situation, the Dodgers have no intention to bid on Cano this winter, leaving the second baseman without one of the sport’s richest teams in the sweepstakes for his services.

Todd Zolecki (@ToddZolecki) of The Zo Zone breaks down Cliff Lee’s impressive year despite a disappointing Phillies’ season…

Cliff Lee delivered the type of performance tonight the Phillies expected when they signed him to a five-year, $120 million contract in December 2010.

But this start did not come in the thick of a pennant race. This start came with two inconsequential games remaining in the Phillies’ first losing season since 2002. Lee worked masterfully in eight innings in the final start of his season in a 1-0 loss to the Braves at Turner Field. He struck out six consecutive batters at one point — one short of tying Steve Carlton and Curt Schilling for the franchise record — and struck out 13 batters overall.

The Dallas Morning News writes that C.J. Wilson is claiming to have received ‘rubbed’ balls from the Rangers during last night’s game…

C.J. Wilson blamed “rubbed” baseballs on some of his control issues in the third inning. In that inning, he hit two batters and threw three wild pitches, allowing two runs.

Check out the details from SportsDay’s Evan Grant:

Bill Shaikin (@BillShaikin) of the LA Times looks at the six shutout innings Clayton Kershaw pitched last night against the Rockies…

The game had three innings to go, but Clayton Kershaw was done. In his final tuneup for the playoffs, he had pitched six shutout innings, and he was about to retreat to the clubhouse.

The Dodgers would have none of it. The video board promptly flashed a statistical comparison to Sandy Koufax, the crowd erupted in applause, and Juan Uribe pushed Kershaw up the dugout steps and toward the field. Kershaw took in the standing ovation, and headed inside, and into October.

Stephanie Storm (@SStormABJ) of the Akron Beacon Journal reports that the Indians will not use Chris Perez as the ninth inning man…

Indians manager Terry Francona met with Chris Perez on Friday afternoon at Target Field and told him that he won’t use him in the ninth inning for the time being.

Just how long Perez will be out of the mix remains to be seen. But after blowing a save Tuesday in Cleveland and turning a five-run lead in the ninth inning Thursday in Minnesota into a one-run nail-biter, Francona said Friday that he will manage with a closer-by-committee approach for now.