Sunday May 06, 2012 | 05:56 AM

Boston's winningest starter, Clay Buchholz, comes in today with hopes of stopping a four-game losing streak.

Buchholz is 3-1. He also has an 8.69 ERA and has not allowed FEWER than 5 runs per start,

The Orioles counter with Tommy Hunter (2-1, 4.26). Hunter, obtained by the Rangers last July, is 2-1 lifetime against the Red Sox.

Matt Barnes was promoted to Salem after 5 starts in low Class A Greenville.

How long will it take for him to get to Portland?

Barnes, 21, the Red Sox first-round pick last year, struck out 12 in his Salem debut Saturday. Barnes pitched 6 innings (4 H, 1 R, 1 BB). Barnes threw 92 pitches/70strikes. He now has a total of 54 strikeouts in 32 2/3 innings.

Another eventual candidate for promotion is another first-rounder from last year, outfielder Jackie Bradley, who is batting .366 in Salem. He did not get a hit Saturday, but walked three times, upping his on-base percentage to .488 (best in the minors).

A lesser-known draft pick from 2011 is ninth-rounder Travis Shaw, the Salem first-baseman who is batting .364 with a .914 OPS. He had a 3-run double Saturday.

Portland outfielder Ronald Bermudez had half of the Sea Dogs' hits Saturday, going 2-for-3. Bermudez, batting .345, is one of the Sea Dogs featured in today's column.

In Portland's 5-0 loss, starter Chris Hernandez (1.99 ERA) threw 5 inning (2 H, 2 R, 3 BB, 3 K) ... Brock Huntzinger had his first rough relief appearance (1 IP, 4 H, 3 R, 0 BB, 1 K).

In Triple-A, shortstop Jose Iglesias is 6-for-10 since returning from Boston ... Lars Anderson, also recently demoted, had two doubles Saturday ... Mauro Gomez (1.025 OPS) hit his 19th home run ... Che-Hsuan Lin (.222) hit his second home run ... Mark Melancon (0.00 ERA) pitched a 2-hit inning (1 K).

Check back later. I'll be at Fenway today. On twitter: ClearTheBases


About this Blog

Kevin Thomas covers baseball and basketball for the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram. He wisely moved to Maine in 1994 after working for the St. Petersburg Times. He is married to Nancy and they have nine children.

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