for this game

Vazquez outduels Matsuzaka, White Sox edge Red Sox

Jul 20, 2007 - 6:18 AM BOSTON (Ticker) -- Despite a down year for the Chicago White Sox, Javier Vazquez has been an elevating presence.

Vazquez pitched 6 1/3 excellent innings, outdueling Daisuke Matsuzaka as the White Sox posted a 4-2 victory over the Boston Red Sox on Thursday.

A.J. Pierzynski had three hits and drove in three runs and Paul Konerko hit a solo homer for Chicago, which won the opener of a four-game series here.

Chicago, which won the World Series just two short years ago, is eight games under .500 and just two games out of last place in the American League Central Division.

Vazquez (7-5), however, has been a shining star recently, winning his fourth straight decision.

"I do feel better," Vazquez said. "I think I am learning more, and when my confidence is at a good level, it helps a lot."

The righthander yielded two runs, nine hits and two walks to the high-powered Boston offense.

"Javier's last two outings, he's given up early runs, but he's stayed in the game and kept us close, and that's all you can ask from the starting pitcher," White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said. "He battled against a pretty good hitting ballclub. He got in trouble a couple of times but still went out after the first couple of innings and settled down."

It was Vazquez's first win in five tries at Fenway Park.

After allowing an RBI groundout by Julio Lugo and a run-scoring single by Dustin Pedroia in the second inning, Vazquez allowed just two more hits before running into trouble in the seventh.

"Most of the hits by the Red Sox were early in the game," Vazquez said. "Later on, after the third and fourth inning, I started to get in a rhythm and the guys scored enough runs for a good win."

The White Sox built a 3-2 lead courtesy of an RBI single by Pierzynski in the first and a two-run base hit by the catcher in the sixth.

"A.J. had good at-bats," Konerko said. "He had that one at-bat against Matsuzaka where he was fouling off pitches. It was a good fight and he ended up hitting the ball through the hole."

Vazquez came back out to start the bottom of the seventh. However, after recording one out, he surrendered a single by Pedroia before Guillen took his starter out of the game after 109 pitches.

Matt Thornton entered and immediately allowed a single by David Ortiz to put runners on first and second. Reliever Ryan Bukvich came on to get Manny Ramirez to fly out to deep center field before striking out Kevin Youkilis, ending the threat.

Closer Bobby Jenks pitched a 1-2-3 ninth inning to record his 26th save in 31 opportunities.

"I think everybody out of the bullpen did a pretty good job," Guillen said. "Bukvich, he went out and pitched a (heck) of a ballgame. If we continue to do that, it's going to be a different scenario down the stretch."

In the top of the eighth, Konerko led off by belting his 21st homer off All-Star reliever Hideki Okajima to make it 4-2.

"I was just trying to hit the ball up in the air a little bit," Konerko said. "Okajima has a great changeup or split or whatever he calls it. I was just trying to make it airborne."

Chicago scored its first three runs off Matsuzaka (11-7), who allowed just two hits but walked a season-high six in five innings.

"From the outset today, I wasn't able to throw any strikes and I felt that my stuff was just OK today," Matsuzaka said through an interpreter. "I just wasn't able to control the strike zone very well."

The 26-year-old rookie from Tokyo had won three consecutive starts at home.

"Daisuke pitched himself into a box where you give up a single and it's a couple of runs," Red Sox manager Terry Francona said. "They certainly weren't hitting him all over the ballpark."

Pedroia had three hits while Ramirez and Mike Lowell each recorded two for Boston, which has lost three straight and four of five.

"We're getting hits, but we're either not stringing them together or we're getting two-out hits," Francona said. "I think that it's usually a number of things. You can make your own luck or breaks, and we're not doing enough of that right now."








  • AL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    CHI WHITE SOX 1 0 0 0 0 2 0 1 0 4 6 0
    BOSTON 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 11 0 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: CHA - JAVIER VAZQUEZ, MATT THORNTON (7TH), RYAN BUKVICH (7TH), BOBBY
    JENKS (9TH) AND A.J. PIERZYNSKI
    BOS - DAISUKE MATSUZAKA, MANNY DELCARMEN (6TH), JAVIER
    LOPEZ (

    Jul 20 12:36 AM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY PAUL KONERKO (21) TO LEFT WITH 0 OUT IN
    THE 8TH OFF HIDEKI OKAJIMA.
    CURRENT SCORE: CHI WHITE SOX 4, BOSTON 2
    DUE UP FOR CHI WHITE SOX: A PIERZYNSKI (.258, 2-FOR-3, 3 RBI)

    White Sox vs. Red SoxJul 20 12:00 AM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY A.J. PIERZYNSKI SCORED TADAHITO IGUCHI AND JIM
    THOME.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, A PIERZYNSKI ON FIRST, P KONERKO ON SECOND, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHI WHITE SOX 3
    BOSTON 2 TOP, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR CHI WHITE SOX: J DYE (.229, 0-FOR-1, BB)

    White Sox vs. Red SoxJul 19 11:05 PM
  • 15
    roots
    Roadie Added 5 roots

    White Sox vs. Red SoxJul 19 10:53 PM
  • 10
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    medication Added 5 roots

    White Sox vs. Red SoxJul 19 10:49 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY DUSTIN PEDROIA SCORED JULIO LUGO.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, 1 LEFT ON, 3 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHI WHITE SOX 1
    BOSTON 2 END BOTTOM, 2ND

    White Sox vs. Red SoxJul 19 9:53 PM


  • AL
    AT BOSTON - SCORING UPDATE
    FIELDER'S CHOICE BY JULIO LUGO SCORED MIKE LOWELL.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J LUGO ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHI WHITE SOX 1
    BOSTON 1 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: C CRISP (.265, 0-FOR-1)

    White Sox vs. Red SoxJul 19 9:45 PM


  • AL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    CHI WHITE SOX 1 1 1 0
    BOSTON 0 0 0 (BOT 1)

    CURRENT PITCHERS: CHA - JAVIER VAZQUEZ
    BOS - DAISUKE MATSUZAKA

    DUE UP FOR BOSTON: C CRISP (.266, 5 HR, 30 RBI)
    D PEDROIA (.316, 4 HR, 28 RBI)
    D ORTIZ (.321, 16 HR, 59 R

    White Sox vs. Red SoxJul 19 9:20 PM
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    White Sox vs. Red SoxJul 19 6:48 AM