Price: Tough start not going to 'weigh on me'

Price: Tough start not going to 'weigh on me'

BOSTON -- For all the talk about the mechanical adjustments Red Sox ace David Price is making leading into Thursday's start vs. the Astros, the lefty made it clear that he's in a good place mentally despite his early struggles with his new team.

"No, it's not going to weigh on me," said Price. "I know things are going to turn around. I think we're six games over .500 right now, top of the American League [East]. That's good. For me to come in and struggle the way that I have and still be 4-1, that's a testament to all the offense, our bullpen, just how we've come together as a team."

One of the reasons the Red Sox were so comfortable in making such a big investment in Price is because of his reputation for being tough-minded, even when things aren't going well.

"I think he fully anticipated the attention that signing the deal and coming to Boston or just being in Boston itself," said Red Sox manager John Farrell. "And set aside the contract; I think he's fully anticipated the passion of our fan base, the fine-tooth comb that things get put under at times. He's a very strong person. And he has the utmost character and he's a guy that will come through these experiences."

Price, who has a 6.75 ERA in his first seven starts, looks forward to getting back on track when he takes the ball Thursday night.

"I'm mentally strong," Price said. "I'm not going to harp on these seven starts or my last start. I'm going to go out there on Thursday and be ready to get after the Astros."

As for the adjustments Price has made in his delivery, he felt those played out well in his side session on Monday.

"I definitely felt it," Price said. "I felt it just playing catch before I even got into the bullpen, so it was good."

Worth noting

• Right-hander Clay Buchholz expressed surprise that Farrell lifted him after 87 pitches and five innings on Monday while holding a 7-4 lead.

"I didn't really know what was going on. I thought I got traded or something," said Buchholz, who gave up six hits and four runs.

Farrell's reaction to that comment?

"It's been a busy day today, so that conversation is yet to be had," Farrell said. "But as I said last night, they pressed him early and where we were in the lineup, Tommy Layne has been extremely effective of late, a fully rested bullpen. If Clay goes out and throws a couple more innings, which he was fully capable of doing, I think those innings are going to come back to us later in the year."

• Lefty Eduardo Rodriguez, who will make at least one more Minor League rehab start, had a side session at Fenway Park on Tuesday and also worked at fielding his position. Rodriguez is recovering from a patella subluxation in his right knee, which has him focusing on his arm and his leg as he tries to build himself back up.

"They go hand in hand," Farrell said. "He's making improvements in both. The last hurdle for the pitcher or an athlete is the mental block. He's going out, throwing 100 pitches, so there is support, there is strength, and yet he's getting back in shape at the same time. So there's a little bit of a favored gate at times, but the more reactionary plays he can make to prove to himself that everything is going to be fine, he should be good to go.

"He had a very powerful and crisp bullpen [session] today, his best to date. So I think it's suggesting that he's becoming more confident with it as well."

Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.