The Red Sox and White Sox are ready to start the third game of their four-game set.
We'll keep you up-to-date on all the action as it goes down in Fenway Park.
Red Sox 10, White Sox 1, End 8th -- A 1-2-3 inning sends it quickly into the ninth, where Andrew Miller will try to wrap things up for Boston.
Red Sox 10, White Sox 1, Mid 8th -- Mark Melancon has another quick, clean inning, dropping his ERA below six. He's been untouchable since coming back from the minors, to the point where he should really get some more interesting outings in closer games.
Red Sox 10, White Sox 1, End 7th -- Pedro Ciriaco seems to have reversed course. Originally succeeding on junk that got through the infield--or often enough simply got to the infielders slowly enough--Ciriaco is now failing to reach base despite hitting the ball hard. It's actually a good sign for the shortstop, suggesting there might be more to his bat than good luck. For now it's an out that's part of a scoreless eighth, but in an inning that actually matters a line drive is a lot more likely to result in a two-run single than a weak ground ball is.
Red Sox 10, White Sox 1, Mid 7th -- Matt Albers comes into the game for Felix Doubront and gets the Sox a quick 1-2-3 frame.
Red Sox 10, White Sox 1, End 6th -- Once again the top of the lineup does damage for the Sox. Carl Crawford gets things started by being damaged, getting hit by a 92 MPH offering to give the Sox a leadoff baserunner. Cody Ross follows up by making a bid for his third shot of the night, but instead simply planting the ball off the wall to put runners on second and third for Adrian Gonzalez. While the first baseman ends up falling behind early, he fouls off pitch after pitch and then finally gets one to hit, finding the gap in right-center field to bring both men home and extend the Sox' already large lead by another couple of runs.
Red Sox 8, White Sox 1, Mid 6th -- Adrian Gonzalez comes in to glove a weak ground ball with one down an one on and starts a nice 3-5-1 double play to end the sixth inning with the minimum number of batters faced for Felix Doubront. Still, his pitch count is up around 100, leaving him unlikely to return for a seventh.
Red Sox 8, White Sox 1, End 5th -- Pedro Hernandez is finally allowed to leave the mound after a single from Mauro Gomez and walk allowed to Mike Aviles. His replacement gets three outs in short order, but needs a line drive from Pedro Ciriaco right to Dayan Viciedo to end it.
Red Sox 8, White Sox 1, Mid 5th -- Felix Doubront needs just 10 pitches to get through another 1-2-3 inning in the fifth. He's settled in nicely, even if he's still not exactly baffling batters the way he did early in the year.
Red Sox 8, White Sox 1, End 4th -- And just like that, after a slump that seemed to be dragging on for Cody Ross, he has a pair of three-run shots in back-to-back innings.
This time it's Pedro Ciriaco on base with Jacoby Ellsbury rather than Carl Crawford, but the actual homer isn't too different. It comes on a changeup rather than a fastball, and catches a bit more of the plate, but it's still a total no-doubter that gets up and over everything in left, possibly denting a car in the parking lot we've all seen so many times.
The other difference in the fourth is that this time Ross gets some accompaniment from about the best source possible: Adrian Gonzalez. Despite getting his 0-1 fastball down, Pedro Hernandez leaves it over the plate and Gonzalez is all-too-happy to go get it, putting a surprisingly large jolt on the ball and knocking it to the opposite field for a Monster seat homer much like the one he hit in the first game of the series. A very positive sign.
Red Sox 4, White Sox 1, Mid 4th -- The White Sox finally go down in order for Felix Doubront, who might at least be able to go six innings now. Pitch count has often been an issue for him, but tonight it's just a matter of baserunners rather than long battles.
Red Sox 4, White Sox 1, End 3rd -- The top of the lineup gets it done, with Jacoby Ellsbury and Carl Crawford once again providing sparks. The outfield combo both go up-the-middle for hits, and while neither was exactly a ringing shot, Carl's likely would have been had his bat not broken, and it gets the job done either way.
The spark, however, apparently did more than just start a fire. It lit Cody Ross' fuse. Pedro Hernandez made the mistake of trying to get a fastball in on Ross and not absolutely burying it. The result is a tremendous moonshot the likes of which only seem to come from Cody Ross facing a lefty, up and over everything to left and giving the Sox a nice three-run lead.
Red Sox 1, White Sox 1, Mid 3rd -- Unfortunately, Felix Doubront's easiest inning of the night still features a walk and leaves him at 60 pitches come the third out. But with some of the outings the Sox have received lately they won't complain about one run in three innings.
Red Sox 1, White Sox 1, End 2nd -- Kelly Shoppach's two-out base hit begs the question why the catcher with a bat that's been on fire since the beginning of the season and who absolutely destroys lefties is batting eighth in the lineup tonight. Given that all three batters around him failed to reach base it's not really a costly distinction just yet, but it's just not very good lineup construction by Bobby Valentine.
Red Sox 1, White Sox 1, Mid 2nd -- Doubront works through an up-and-down second inning to escape with the tie intact. While the outs were the sort you want to see--two pop-ups and a strikeout of Alejandro De Aza, who had taken him to the wall in the first--they were interspersed with a flair into center field for a single and a four-pitch walk. There's nothing coming easy for the Sox rotation these days.
Red Sox 1, White Sox 1, End 1st -- And the Red Sox strike back with almost a carbon copy of the Chicago first. Jacoby Ellsbury also finds the wall in left field, though his legs get him to second before the ball can be brought in. While the next two at bats would ultimately result in two outs, once again it was the first baseman coming to the plate and knocking a hit into right field that scored the run. Ellsbury and Gonzalez keep right on rolling--certainly a good sign for a team that's missed their production for the better part of the year (if not under the same circumstances).
White Sox 1, Red Sox 0, Mid 1st -- It wouldn't be a Fenway first if it didn't feature a run for the opposition. Felix Doubront gets himself in deep water early on by giving up a wall ball single (played excellently by Carl Crawford to prevent extra bases) and a line drive up the middle that put runners on first and second without an out. Though Adam Dunn would provide a much-needed GIDP, a pitch left too high to Paul Konerko is a recipe for failure this year, and the first baseman did not disappoint, slapping a single to right that plated the run.
It's the tenth straight game in Fenway Park with a run scoring in the first (per the illustrious Tim Britton), so if the Sox aren't playing great baseball, they've at least got their sights set on the record books.