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Game Two: Red Sox 5 – Tigers 3
- This was the kind of mentally tough win that great teams grind out. Playing in front of 5,000 fans on a sleepy Tuesday afternoon amid a team-wide offensive slump, it would have been easy for the Red Sox to just go through the motions and accept it wasn’t their day. Instead, they battled back to tie the game with a three-run sixth and took the lead with two runs in the eighth. Lesser teams lose this game, and this was the first sign that great things may be ahead for the 2022 Red Sox.
- One thing hitting coaches tell you when you’re struggling is to let the ball travel and work the entire field. That’s exactly what Kiké Hernández did on Tuesday. After starting the season in an 0-18 funk, Hernandez smacked two doubles down the right-field line and mixed in a walk for good measure. That doesn’t mean that Hernandez is completely out of his slump, but it’s nice to see him get on the board.
- There’s something to be said for a guy who throws strikes and knows how to manipulate the zone. There’s also something to be said for throwing over 90 mph, and Rich Hill didn’t do that once on Tuesday. He breezed through the first two innings with ease but got jumped for three runs in the third. To be fair, the defense was not great behind him, but when you can’t strike anyone out, you leave yourself susceptible to BABIP luck.
- Speaking of poor defense, Christian Arroyo was a mess Tuesday in right field. He took two disastrous routes to catchable fly balls that helped lead to the 3-run third. The Red Sox forced him to learn right field on the fly, and the early returns are not good. He’s going to need to hit a lot more than he currently is to justify at-bats as an outfielder.
- Garrett Whitlock is an absolute machine. There is just nothing that can phase the guy. He’s as unassuming as you could possibly get on the mound, but he made the Tigers lineup look like amateurs in his four scoreless innings in relief. The great thing about Whitlock is that he throws so many strikes that his pitch count stays remarkably low even in extended work, which allows him to pitch more often than most stretched-out relievers.
- Jonathan Arauz punched out two more times and is still without a hit on the season. Trevor Story can’t come back soon enough.