BOSTON — Eight-inning starts are becoming routine for rookie Jose Quintana.
So are no-decisions.
The Chicago White Sox left-hander watched another gem get spoiled Thursday night when closer Addison Reed surrendered a walk-off, three-run home run to Cody Ross with one out in the ninth inning of a 3-1 loss to the Boston Red Sox.
"This is going to happen. It won't be the first or the last time," Quintana said through a translator. "Some days you have some good outings and some days you don't, so just got to go out there and keep playing."
Quintana gave up five hits with no walks and two strikeouts, throwing 103 pitches in his 10th start of the season.
It was the fourth time the 23-year-old lasted eight innings, allowing no runs in three of those games and just one in the other. Three times he was saddled with a no-decision.
"He has a lot of poise for such a young kid," White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. "We're lucky to have him."
Quintana yielded just one hit through six-plus innings and escaped a based-loaded, one-out jam in the seventh when Will Middlebrooks hit into a double play, preserving Chicago's 1-0 lead.
Matt Thornton (2-6) got one out, but left with runners on first and second before Addison Reed faced Ross, who hit a 1-1 pitch into the Green Monster seats.
"There's a small window there for a closer," Ventura said. "So he's just going to have to put it in the rearview mirror and be ready for tomorrow."
Carl Crawford opened the ninth with a single, but was erased on Dustin Pedroia's fielder's choice grounder. Adrian Gonzalez then singled to right before Reed came in. Just before the first pitch, Boston sent Nick Punto in to pinch run, slowing Reed down a bit.
It came one night after Ross hit three-run homers in consecutive innings of a 10-1 win.
"You've seen it in the past, he's been able to get hot and streaky and knock in a lot of runs," Ventura said.
Boston took three of four games in the series and is 5-2 since the All Star break.
It was the fifth loss in 13 games for AL Central-leading Chicago, which opens three-game series at second-place Detroit on Friday night.
Alfredo Aceves (1-6) pitched one inning for the win.
Boston's Clay Buchholz had a solid start, allowing one run, six hits, striking out six and walking one in eight innings.
Buchholz had been given the second-most run support in the majors at 7.48 runs per nine innings – only behind teammate Felix Doubront's 8.38 per – but the Red Sox couldn't solve the rookie lefty.
Boston was held to one hit until loading the bases with one out in the seventh on singles by Pedroia, Gonzalez and Ross. Shortstop Alexei Ramirez was leaning the wrong way on Middlebrooks' liner, dove back, grabbed the ball on one hop and fired to second to start an inning-ending double play.
The White Sox grabbed a 1-0 lead in the fourth when Adam Dunn drew a leadoff walk and advanced to third on Paul Konerko's single, barely beating right fielder Ross' throw. Alex Rios followed with his sacrifice fly to center and Dunn trotted home easily.
Unlike Wednesday night when the Red Sox pounded a rookie left-handed starter for eight runs, three homers and 12 hits in four innings, Boston had just Pedro Ciriaco's two-out triple in the third.
Second baseman Pedroia returned from the 15-day disabled list after being out with a strained right thumb and went 1 for 4.
Chicago's Kevin Youkilis didn't play because of a tight left hamstring. He was 4 for 8 with a homer and three RBIs in his first series against his former team of 7 1-2 years since being traded on June 24.
NOTES: "Every once in a while it flares up on him," Ventura said of Youkilis' tight hamstring. "It flared up last night and we can give him the night off to get him ready for the weekend." It was the first time he hasn't played since being acquired from the Red Sox June 24. ... White Sox LHP John Danks, out with a mild muscle strain in his shoulder since May, played catch again Thursday and felt good, which is a lot different than a few weeks ago. "It would hurt for a couple of days after I did it then," he said. ... Ventura agreed that this weekend's series at Detroit is important. "It's a big series, but it's not going to win or break (our season)," he said.