Alexei Ramirez gave the Sox a quick two-run lead in the first, and he had plenty left in the bag. Three run-scoring hits later, Ramirez had himself a five-RBI game, and drove in more runs than the entire Dodgers lineup.
That's not a bad way to close out a 5-2 homestand, especially when it comes against a high-quality pitcher like Hiroki Kuroda.
They got to him early. After Ramirez's blast, A.J. Pierzynski got a hold of one and sent it through the wind and over the Bullpen Sports Bar for a 3-0 lead. The Sox made Kuroda throw 28 pitches, and they set the tone for a drawn-out affair.
Fortunately, by the time Edwin Jackson started to lose command, he had quite a cushion. Ramirez just missed on his second homer, settling for an RBI double in the second. In the third, they turned a couple of Dodgers misplays (a throwing error by Rafael Furcal, Andre Ethier failing to catch a ball before running into the fence) into two runs. Ramirez came through once again with a sky-high pop-up single, and after the Sox loaded the bases, Paul Konerko swung on 3-0 and hit a fly just deep enough to allow Juan Pierre to score despite Matt Kemp's best efforts.
A 6-0 lead ended up being plenty for Jackson, although the game turned into a grind shortly thereafter. Storm cells surrounded the ballpark, and between the frequent pitching changes and lengthy at-bats, it almost seemed like the players were angling for a delay. Jackson even struggled to make it official, needing 17 pitches to go from two outs to three in the top of the fifth.
Chris Sale didn't help matters. Guillen pulled Jackson after a walk with two outs in the sixth, and Sale was supposed to pick up the slack. He finished the inning with a strikeout, but when it came to the seventh, Sale didn't have much. Jay Gibbons crushed a double to right-center, Jerry Sands lined a single to left, and he walked Russ Mitchell to load the bases.
Jesse Crain had to clean up his mess, which he did well enough. He did walk in a run, which eventually brought the tying run to the plate in Matt Kemp after an RBI groundout. He got Kemp to hit a weak grounder to the right side, and Adam Dunn was able to flip it to Crain in time to beat Kemp by a half-step.
Once again, Ramirez was there to keep the Dodgers at arm's length. He drove in Gordon Beckham with a double to right-center, and then Dunn came through with a flared single to center to get the second run back.
Matt Thornton recorded his second save of the season by accident. He pitched a 1-2-3 eighth (assisted by a fine catch by Juan Pierre). Sergio Santos was warming in the bullpen to pitch the ninth, but after Ramirez restored the five-run lead, Guillen left Thornton on the mound to finish the job.
*Beckham made a fine barehanded play on a soft grounder to his right, with Dunn making a good scoop at first to complete the out.
*Ramirez's lone blemish was in the field, as he couldn't come up with a soft grounder that he charged.
*The Dodgers were 3-for-3 running on Pierzynski, and Pierzynski threw one attempt into center field for the error. Jackson also spiked a pickoff throw in his attempt to slow down the running game.