David Ortiz hits 509th homer to power Red Sox past White Sox
CHICAGO (AP) - David Ortiz hit his 509th home run to put the Boston Red Sox ahead to stay in a 5-2 victory over the Chicago White Sox on Wednesday night.
Ortiz's two-run shot to right field off Carlos Rodon in the fifth inning tied him with Gary Sheffield for 25th all-time. It was the sixth homer of his farewell season and his 451st with Boston, one off Carl Yastrzemski's club mark.
Ortiz added an RBI single in the seventh against Zach Duke, and embattled Clay Buchholz (1-3) was sharp over seven innings in Boston's fourth win in five games.
Jose Abreu's two-run homer in the first was the only blemish for Buchholz, who allowed three hits and struck out six.
Rodon (1-4) gave up three runs and six hits over six innings as the White Sox failed to win their 20th game and match the crosstown Cubs for most wins in the majors.
Craig Kimbrel pitched a scoreless ninth for his ninth save, after the 40-year-old Ortiz helped Boston break out of its funk against left-handers.
The Red Sox managed four hits off Jose Quintana on Tuesday night, falling to 0-3 against lefty starters. But Xander Bogaerts had three hits Wednesday, including an RBI single off Rodon in the second.
That was enough in Buchholz's best outing of the season.
He entered with a 6.51 ERA and Boston had lost all five of his starts, prompting manager John Farrell to say the right-hander needed to "attack the strike zone."
Abreu crushed Buchholz's 92 mph fastball an estimated 402 feet to left in the first inning for his fourth homer despite the wind blowing in on a 45-degree night. Abreu has 10 RBIs during his eight-game hitting streak.
But Buchholz walked only two, and Boston ended Chicago's three-game winning streak despite first baseman Hanley Ramirez being a late scratch with an illness.
Red Sox: Farrell said the team will shed one of 13 pitchers and add a position player once restrictions on RHP Carson Smith are lifted in his return from a forearm injury. . LHP Eduardo Rodriguez (right knee) will aim for 100 pitches in what could be his final rehab start Sunday for Triple-A Pawtucket. . RHP Joe Kelly (shoulder) is scheduled to throw 55 pitches Friday for Pawtucket.
White Sox: DH Avisail Garcia (right hamstring) missed his fourth straight game after experiencing discomfort while running a day earlier.
A day after his 10-year run in Chicago ended, LHP John Danks (0-4, 7.25 ERA) told White Sox beat reporters he "can't fault anybody" for the team's decision to designate him for assignment.
"It's a win-now league, and I wasn't helping the team win," Danks said.
Rodon drew Danks' old No. 50 into the dirt on the back of the mound in the first.
RHP Erik Johnson arrives from Triple-A Charlotte and gets the first chance Thursday night to fill the hole in Chicago's rotation following Danks' departure. LHP Henry Owens (0-0, 4.82 ERA) makes his third start for Boston to close the three-game series.