It takes some great pitching to cram a full Boston Red Sox game into a two-hour, 10 minute window, and that's exactly what Gavin Floyd brought tonight.
Floyd was outstanding over seven strong innings, holding a potent lineup to just three hits in a start that showcased both his stuff and his toughness.
For the most part, the Red Sox couldn't square him up. He was using his slider/cutter and curve to great effect, especially coming inside to Boston's lefties. He only made one mistake -- a flat slider on a full count to Jarrod Saltalamacchia, which ended up in the seats just inside the right-field foul pole.
The good news was that it was a solo shot. When the Red Sox loaded the bases on him with an infield singles and a pair of walks (one semi-intentional to David Ortiz), Floyd had to get through Kevin Youkilis to keep it a one run game. He got ahead 0-2, and then put him away with a fastball off the plate that a very inconsistent Rob Drake called a strike, helping him escape the jam.
When Floyd's counterpart, Tim Wakefield, gave up a homer to his catcher, he didn't have Floyd's timing.
The White Sox had tied the game in the bottom of the sixth, in a somewhat inefficient manner. Juan Pierre led off with a bunt single. Instead of having him steal second on a knuckleballer, Ozzie Guillen gave Omar Vizquel the bunt sign. it worked well enough, but when a passed ball allowed Pierre to take third with Paul Konerko at the plate, it was fair to question why Guillen surrendered the out. At least Konerko was able to hit a sac fly to get the one run they were playing for.
The seventh started with a Carlos Quentin walk, and A.J. Pierzynski coming to the plate. Guillen let him swing away, and something wonderful happened -- a two-run homer to right-center, giving the White Sox a 3-1 lead.
That cushion proved to be more than comfortable, as Matt Thornton and Sergio Santos never let the tying run get to the plate. Each pitched a 1-2-3 inning, with Santos actually facing three whole batters.