Dogs are generally considered members of the family, right?
That's most definitely the case for Mark Buehrle's family.
Buehrle was shipped off to the Toronto Blue Jays along with Josh Johnson, Emilio Bonifacio and others during this past offseason, and his family was looking to move to Ontario to stay close by.
Instead, they'll be living in their current home, nearly 800 miles away (via Jerry Crasnick, NBC Sports).
Why? Well, the family owns a pit bull—two-year old Slater, just in case you were interested. In Ontario, pit bull ownership has been outlawed.
Buehrle and Slater will have one serious goodbye before he leaves for spring training, as it may be the last time he sees him for awhile.
A 14-year veteran, Buehrle is used to being away from his family for long periods of time. Such is the nature of major league travel and things like that.
With that being the case, this shouldn't affect his production in 2013. However, there still is a slight chance that the separation from his family (and Slater) could hurt his numbers.
Not to mention that pitching in the AL East will also give his numbers quite a run for their money.
Buehrle has a career ERA of 3.82, but expect it to be around 4.10 or so in 2013. The AL East has more potent offenses than the AL Central which he was used to with the Chicago White Sox. That alone should be enough to lead to some ERA inflation.
Being without his family in 2013 will be difficult for Buehrle, no doubt. It's how he will handle it that remains to be seen.
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