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Jon Lester: Fate of Sox staff in air

It's a big day for Boston's arms.

With Daisuke Matsuzaka out for the year, John Lackey a shell of his former self and Clay Buchholz on the shelf with lower back pain, the Red Sox have plenty of worries about their pitching staff.

They'll find out just how severe those worries are today.

Jon Lester left last night's game after four hitless innings with a strained left latissimus dorsi muscle. He's scheduled to undergo an examination today to determine the extent of the problem.

For Lester's part, he said he wanted to pitch the fifth inning last night, but was persuaded to stay out by trainer Mike Reinold.

“It should be fine, hopefully for the
rest of the season,’’ Lester told reporters. “I don’t think it’s a long-term issue.
We may alter one start. We’ve got the All-Star break built in.’’

Meanwhile, Buchholz is scheduled to see a specialist in Charlotte, N.C., today. He hasn't pitched since June 16, and has reportedly been ruled out until after the All-Star break.

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