|Chi. White Sox (50-40) «||2||1||0||3||0||1||0||0||0||7||11||1|
BOSTON -- Kevin Youkilis drove a full-count pitch over Fenway Park's famed left-field wall, lowered his head and started to trot around the bases as fans loudly cheered "Yooouk!"
The scene was familiar everywhere in the ballpark except the scoreboard, where Youkilis' three-run shot was tallied for the visiting Chicago White Sox in a 7-5 victory against the Boston Red Sox on Tuesday night.
"You never know here, but it's been great," Youkilis said of his reception. "Fans have treated me unbelievable and I can't thank them enough for all the kind things they keep saying from the stands every day and every inning. Not too many opponents get to come in here and have that opportunity. Usually it's a little more negative at the opposition."
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Youkilis isn't just another former Red Sox. He was one of the most popular players on the club for years before the June 24 trade and two games into the Sox-Sox series in Boston, he's still a fan favorite.
Youkilis had three hits the night before, but the Red Sox won the series opener 5-1. His eighth home run of the season was his only hit Tuesday and brought him up to 4 for 8 in the series with two doubles, a home run, three RBI and four runs scored.
"Yeah, he's just showing off, just rising to the occasion for us and being in big spots," manager Robin Ventura said. "I think there's something when you get traded, there's something to prove and that all goes into it with a lot of people that's happened to. Coming back here, not that he says anything, but it's nice for him to get in those situations and come through."
The White Sox won for the eighth time in 11 games and are 10 games above .500 (50-40) for the fourth time this season.
Philip Humber (4-4) made his first start in a month and settled down after allowing two runs in a shaky first inning, when the Red Sox tagged him for three hits and two runs to tie it after Chicago went up 2-0 in the top of the first.
Humber had been on the disabled list as he recovered from a right elbow strain. Chicago activated him earlier Tuesday and he gave the White Sox six strong innings, scattering six hits, striking out three and not walking a batter before leaving the game after throwing 104 pitches.
"He comes back and was great. This was what we expect out of him in locating and keeping people off balance. That's a tough lineup. They create a lot of problems," Ventura said. "He was getting ahead early and then locating in key counts and not really giving them a whole lot to swing at."
Carl Crawford continued his strong start since joining the Red Sox on Monday after rehabilitating wrist and elbow injuries during the first half of the season. Crawford went 3 for 4, stole three bases and scored twice on Tuesday. In two games back, Crawford is 4 for 7 with four runs scored.
Jon Lester (6-6) had good velocity, but poor control from the start and threw 50 pitches in the first two innings. He threw 27 in the first when Youkilis walked and Adam Dunn, Paul Konerko and Alex Rios followed with hits to put the White Sox up 2-0.
Crawford and Adrian Gonzalez hit RBI singles to tie it in the bottom of the first, but Chicago went up in the second with a run, then Youkilis blew it open in the fourth.
"It was a frustrating night for Jon," Boston manager Bobby Valentine said. "After he gave up the two in the first and we came back, he thought he'd be able to settle down and get us the victory. His control just wasn't there."
With two on and two outs, Youkilis hit a towering shot to left to put the White Sox up 6-2 in the fourth. Boston fans cheered "Yooouk!" as he trotted around the bases, showing the former Red Sox third baseman will always be beloved in Boston. It was Youkilis' fourth home run since being traded from to Chicago, tying his total with the Red Sox in 42 games this season.
Lester allowed six runs on seven hits over four innings.
"When the ball's leaving my hand I'm not in the part of the zone that I need to be. I'm up a little bit," Lester said. "I don't know what it is. I've just got to keep throwing the ball. It'll turn."
|Kevin Youkilis hits his fourth home run with the White Sox, matching the four he had in 42 games with Boston earlier this year. (AP)|
|Players of the Game|
|Chicago White Sox|
|Alejandro De Aza, CF||5||0||2||2||0||2||0||.278|
|Kevin Youkilis, 3B||4||2||1||3||1||1||1||.260|
|Adam Dunn, DH||4||1||1||0||1||2||0||.212|
|Paul Konerko, 1B||4||0||2||1||0||0||1||.320|
|Alex Rios, RF||4||0||2||1||0||0||2||.319|
|A.J. Pierzynski, C||4||0||0||0||0||2||5||.291|
|Dayan Viciedo, LF||4||1||1||0||0||1||1||.258|
|Alexei Ramirez, SS||4||2||2||0||0||0||1||.266|
|Gordon Beckham, 2B||3||1||0||0||1||1||2||.237|
|2B - Alejandro De Aza (18, Lester), Paul Konerko (16, Lester), Dayan Viciedo (9, Lester), Alexei Ramirez (14, Tazawa)|
|HR - Kevin Youkilis (8, Lester)|
|RBI - Alejandro De Aza 2 (35), Kevin Youkilis 3 (32), Paul Konerko (43), Alex Rios (51)|
|2-OUT RBI - Alejandro De Aza (10), Kevin Youkilis 3 (11)|
|SB - Adam Dunn (1, 2nd base off Lester/Saltalamacchia), Alex Rios (14, 2nd base off Tazawa/Saltalamacchia), Alexei Ramirez (12, 2nd base off Lester/Saltalamacchia)|
|CS - Alejandro De Aza (8, 2nd base by Tazawa/Saltalamacchia), Alex Rios (5, 2nd base by Lester/Saltalamacchia)|
|Team LOB - 5|
|E - Alex Rios (4, Misplayed grounder)|
|Chicago White Sox|
|Philip Humber (W,4-4)||6||6||2||2||0||3||0||5.77|
|Addison Reed (S,15)||1||0||0||0||0||1||0||3.97|
|HBP - Nava (by Philip Humber)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Philip Humber 104-71, Brian Omogrosso 13-9, Matt Thornton 22-15, Addison Reed 15-11|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Philip Humber 8-7, Matt Thornton 1-1, Addison Reed 1-1|
|Batters Faced - Philip Humber 25, Brian Omogrosso 3, Matt Thornton 6, Addison Reed 3|
|Boston Red Sox|
|Jacoby Ellsbury, CF||5||1||2||0||0||0||0||.265|
|Carl Crawford, LF||4||2||3||1||0||0||0||.571|
|Daniel Nava, DH||3||0||0||0||0||1||3||.261|
|Adrian Gonzalez, 1B||4||0||2||1||0||0||2||.291|
|Will Middlebrooks, 3B||4||1||1||1||0||1||4||.293|
|Jarrod Saltalamacchia, C||3||0||0||0||0||1||2||.229|
|a- Kelly Shoppach, PH-C||1||1||1||2||0||0||0||.271|
|Ryan Sweeney, RF||3||0||0||0||0||0||1||.274|
|b- Cody Ross, PH-RF||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||.262|
|Mike Aviles, SS||4||0||0||0||0||2||0||.263|
|Pedro Ciriaco, 2B||3||0||0||0||0||1||0||.419|
|c- Nick Punto, PH||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||.210|
|a-homered for Saltalamacchia in the 8th|
|b-popped out for Sweeney in the 8th|
|c-grounded out for Ciriaco in the 9th|
|HR - Kelly Shoppach (5, Thornton)|
|RBI - Carl Crawford (1), Adrian Gonzalez (51), Will Middlebrooks (42), Kelly Shoppach 2 (14)|
|2-OUT RBI - Will Middlebrooks (19), Kelly Shoppach 2 (11)|
|SB - Jacoby Ellsbury (1, 2nd base off Humber/Pierzynski), Carl Crawford 3 (3, 2nd base off Humber/Pierzynski, 2nd base off Humber/Pierzynski, 3rd base off Thornton/Pierzynski)|
|Team LOB - 5|
|DP - Saltalamacchia-Aviles|
|Boston Red Sox|
|Jon Lester (L,5-7)||4||7||6||6||3||4||1||4.80|
|Pitches-Strikes - Jon Lester 91-57, Junichi Tazawa 50-39, Franklin Morales 10-5|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jon Lester 5-2, Junichi Tazawa 5-2, Franklin Morales 2-0|
|Batters Faced - Jon Lester 21, Junichi Tazawa 15, Franklin Morales 3|
|Attendance - 37771|
|Game Time - 3:06|
|Temperature - 89|
|Umpires - Home - Mike Everitt, First Base - Manny Gonzalez, Second Base - Paul Schrieber, Third Base - Laz Diaz|