“That’s a pretty big win,” Chicago manager Ozzie Guillen said, “just for the momentum, to get this fire up, get this energy back, get the hope.”
The Red Sox battered Tazawa for all nine runs in four innings, five days after he pitched six scoreless innings in a 14-1 win over the New York Yankees. Green finished up, pitching two hitless innings while allowing three walks.
“I didn’t really want to do it, but because of the situation today I had to do it,” Green said. “When he told me Manny (Delcarmen) was going to work two, Ramon (Ramirez) one, I said, `I’m going in in the eighth inning? Who’s going to pitch the ninth?”’
That was the 30-year-old Green, who turned pro in 2004 and last pitched in junior college.
“It helps us relax a little bit,” Danks said. “We have plenty of time but, at the same time, we can’t be digging ourselves a hole.”
Chicago broke a four-game losing streak, snapped a tie for second place in the AL Central with Minnesota and moved four games behind Detroit. The Twins and Tigers were idle Thursday. The White Sox are 64-64 after dropping under .500 for the first time since June 28.
Boston remained six games behind the New York Yankees in the AL East and dropped to 1 1/2 games ahead of Texas in the wild-card race.
Tazawa (2-3) pitched a perfect first inning before loading the bases with no outs when he allowed singles by Paul Konerko(notes) and Jim Thome(notes) and hit Carlos Quentin(notes). Mark Kotsay(notes) hit a sacrifice fly, Nix followed with a two-run double and Scott Podsednik(notes) had an RBI single.
“Their guy was on the ropes and we were ready to attack,” Nix said.
Tazawa retired the first two batters in the fifth before Konerko walked and Thome doubled him home.
“He obviously wasn’t commanding any of his secondary stuff,” Francona said. “They were looking for that fastball and when you’re throwing one pitch, you better be pretty fine with it.”
Danks allowed just two singles in the first four innings and retired the leadoff batter in the fifth. But Drew and Gonzalez hit back-to-back homers, making it 9-2.
Green, who started 78 games at shortstop this season, threw 90 mph fastballs on his first two pitches.
“I didn’t know what to expect,” he said. “I haven’t thrown a strike to a batter in like 11 years.”
“I think they’re going to make a change,” Guillen joked. “They might start him and put (Tazawa) back in the bullpen.”
NOTES: Thome turned 38 years old Thursday. … Boston CF Jacoby Ellsbury(notes) left the game after suffering a high ankle sprain in the bottom of the fifth. Francona said he didn’t think it was serious. … David Cassidy, formerly of TV’s Partridge Family, sang the national anthem. … Alexei Ramirez(notes) went 2 for 5 after a 2-for-15 slump. … Green’s hitless pitching stint was the longest by a Red Sox position player since May 17, 1944, when Eddie Lake allowed two runs in 2 1-3 innings against the St. Louis Browns.