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Red Sox 11, Twins 5: The start of Tanner Houck’s career

AP Photo/Ashley Landis

An afternoon game for a series finale, there’s just nothing like it!

Sure, I would have preferred to give one of the best starts of Tanner Houck’s career my full attention, but alas, I am a student, and sadly—for the next three weeks—the Red Sox come second. But, Over the Monster does NOT come second because we are all completely dedicated to this wacky, lovable community that we’ve built through your support. So here I am, fulfilling my duties with a day game recap that nobody else could cover!

I hope you all enjoyed the Red Sox’s last day game until uhhhh *checks notes* Sunday! If you couldn’t watch it due to “responsibilities” like “work,” here’s what you need to know:

  • Tanner Houck held it down in the series finale of a three-game stint hosting the Twins. He pitched seven innings for the first time in his career at the major league level, and this start represented the first time he’s pitched at least six innings an outing since his third-ever start in the majors (6 IP, 3 H, ER, 10 K against the Braves).
  • Enrique Hérnandez is… back? Three hits aren’t nothing, but he was bottom three in WPA this game, so I’m going to hold off on making a declarative statement on the status of his performance for at least a bit longer. Granted, he also has six hits in his last three games, but only one has gone for extra bases.
  • Alex Verdugo kept it more than fair this time, leading off the game with a home run (the Sox’s first leadoff home run of 2023).
  • Masataka Yoshida finally figured out how to hit something other than a groundball to second base, and racked up two hits and two RBI of his own. Today marked the first game in which he’s gotten a hit since April 10—ending his four-game hitless streak. Today was also the first time he’s recorded more than one hit since April 6 in game one of the series against the Tigers.
  • I am also hesitant to evaluate Jarren Duran’s level of “back” at this time. He impressed this afternoon and has been lowercase g good in the series against the Twins. In three games, Duran has more or the same amount of doubles as nine Red Sox, four or five of which have consistently been starting for Boston (min. 10 plate appearances).
  • Another big point from today’s contest is the plethora of runs scored with two outs. Through Wednesday, the Red Sox rank top-10 in the league in wOBA with two outs and runners on, so it’s good to see them keeping up with this early season trend. Duran, Yoshida, Connor Wong, and Yu Chang each drove in two runs with two outs today.

Here’s how WPA saw it:

Three Studs

  1. Tanner Houck (.175 WPA), 7 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 7 K
  2. Alex Verdugo (+.116 WPA) 2-4, HR, RBI
  3. Rafael Devers (+.085 WPA), 1-4, RBI

Three Duds

  1. Justin Turner (-.038 WPA), 1-5
  2. Yu Chang (-.015 WPA), 1-4, 2 RBI, K
  3. Enrique Hernandez (-.007 WPA), 3-5, 2 R

WPA Play of the Game

Of course, this play came courtesy of Devers, because he is awesome and amazing and perfect. He drove in his only run of the game with this one-out double, and the first of six runs in the inning for the Red Sox. (.106 WPA).


Who was the Red Sox player of the game in their 10-5 win over the Twins on 4/20/2023?

This poll is closed

  • 90%
    Tanner Houck
    (225 votes)
  • 1%
    Rafael Devers
    (4 votes)
  • 6%
    Alex Verdugo
    (16 votes)
  • 1%
    Masataka Yoshida
    (4 votes)
249 votes total Vote Now