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Red Sox 4, Tigers 1: How Sweep It Is

First sweep for the Sox this season, but the 9th inning brings some serious troubles.

MLB: Boston Red Sox at Detroit Tigers Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

If you watched this Sunday afternoon, you were in for a strange one.

I don’t know if it’s that first getaway day feeling, I don’t know if it’s the pitch clock starting to affect game times, I don’t know if this was just two teams who just didn’t care much for this game. This was probably the furthest thing opposite of an instant classic you can come up with for a baseball game.

I need to credit almost the entire pitching staff in this one; they looked solid on the bump today. Kutter Crawford overcame a shaky first inning and tossed five decidedly OK frames. Josh Winckowski’s family was adorable on the NESN broadcast, having made the trip from Toledo, OH, to watch him toss a clean seventh. Long relief may indeed be the proper role for him going forward. John Schreiber and Chris Martin also did their thing, keeping relatively clean innings going into the ninth.

That last inning, though. One half very good, one half very bad. In the top of the frame, Triston Casas launched a 401-ft homer to right-center field to pad Boston’s lead. Not only is it great to see him rake, but off of left-handed pitching—an aspect he’s truly struggled in during his ascent to the bigs—that’s a huge win for him.

The bottom half of the ninth turned really scary. Although Kenley Jansen did lock down the save, he didn’t look massively effective. It’s easy to overlook a shaky outing against a team like the Tigers; it can bite him down the road against better teams. What hurts this team the most is the possible loss of Adam Duvall. Racing in on a pop fly to lead off the inning, Duvall’s glove got stuck in the grass as he tried to make the catch and immediately came up wincing in pain. Cora and Co. came hustling out, and Duvall left down the tunnel. This was a wrist he had season-ending surgery on last year. If this is as serious an injury as Red Sox Nation is catastrophizing it out to be, this is a heavyweight damaging blow to this lineup. Duvall inarguably has been one of the Red Sox’s best hitters in the first few series of the season, and to lose his pop in the middle of the order drastically changes the balance of this lineup. We all pray to the baseball gods he’s ok.

Regardless, a 4-1 Red Sox win in 2:38, the pitch clock continues to do its job.

The WPA chart for the game on 4/9/2023 between the Boston Red Sox and Detroit Tigers.
The Refsnyder RBI single was beyond impactful to this one! Now much momentum for the Tigers after that.

Three Studs

Kutter Crawford (.170 WPA, 5.0 IP, 1 ER, 6 K)

What a big relief for the Red Sox to have someone from the back of the rotation step up. I’m a little surprised Crawford didn’t throw the sixth inning, considering he’d only thrown 65 pitches through five. Still, a really needed outing from Crawford.

Triston Casas (.127 WPA, 2-for-4, 1 HR, 1 R, 2 RBI)

Obviously, Casas’ homer in the ninth was impactful, but he also had the RBI double that quickly tied the game back up in the top of the second inning. I do have to give credit to Kiké Hernandez for stellar baserunning, but Casas’ bat was a big reason why the Sox came out on top.

Rob Refsnyder (.126 WPA, 1-for-3, 1 R, 1 RBI)

The game-winning RBI, a seeing-eye ground ball through Javy Baez in the top of the fifth inning. Nothing shabby, especially when it can give Yoshida a day off.

Three Duds

Christian Arroyo (-.145 WPA, 0-for-4)

What’s cooler than being cool? Ice cold! That perfectly describes Christian Arroyo right now. I wonder how long the leash is for him, as much as he’s a fan favorite.

Alex Verdugo (-.104 WPA, 1-for-4)

Not much to say here, either. Just a dud game for Verdugo.

Adam Duvall (-.053 WPA, 1-for-4, 1 K)

Seriously, if there is a higher power, we all hope Duvall is OK. I don’t feel like ragging on him right now, not that he did much to rag on anyway.

Play of the Game

With a WPA of .128, Triston Casas’ RBI double in the top of the second proved to be the most impactful play of the afternoon!


Who was the Red Sox’s Player of the Game in their 4-1 win over the Tigers on 4/9/2023?

This poll is closed

  • 52%
    Triston Casas
    (60 votes)
  • 46%
    Kutter Crawford
    (53 votes)
  • 0%
    Rob Refsnyder
    (1 vote)
  • 0%
    Other (let us know in the comments!)
    (1 vote)
115 votes total Vote Now