A favorable pitching matchup on paper didn't work out that way in practice, as the struggling Clay Buchholz righted himself against the White Sox while Carlos Rodon continued to be just a bit off his game.
Buchholz, who entered the game 0-3 with a 6.51 ERA, gave up a titanic two-run homer to Jose Abreu in the first inning, but limited the White Sox to just three baserunners over the next six innings. That gave the Red Sox plenty of time to catch up, although Rodon did himself in more than anybody.
For instance, Rodon should've been able to glove Christian Vazquez's soft comebacker for the second out in the third inning, but it instead glanced off his glove for a single. Jackie Bradley Jr. singled, they both moved up on a wild pitch, and eventually Vazquez scored on Xander Bogaerts' single to cut Chicago's lead in half.
Boston took the lead in the fifth when David Ortiz hit a no-doubt two-run homer of his own, which he'll do. The problem was walking Bogaerts on four pitches in front of Big Papi with two outs. Rodon's control came and went, as he threw just 64 of 110 pitches for strikes over his six innings. He met the requirements for a quality start, but it wasn't enough to avoid the loss.
Buchholz just outpitched him. He did a good job staying off the middle of the plate, and on the few occasions the White Sox did make good contact, it resulted in lineouts. Chilly weather and a strong wind suppressed the better contact to the outfield.
He lasted long enough to get to the best of the Red Sox' bullpen. Koji Uehara pitched a scoreless eighth, and Craig Kimbrel pitched around a walk to Abreu for the save.
Record: 19-9 | Box score | Highlights