The word of the day at Fenway Park Saturday was patience. A key word in the development of any Major League prospect, Boston Red Sox slugger Triston Casas is showing why patience is value in powering his team to an 8-6 victory in the night cap of a double header against the New York Mets.
Following a 5-4 loss to the Mets in the day game, the Red Sox bats woke up in the night cap and Casas was right in the middle of the home run barrage with two powering shots off Mets starter Max Scherzer.
Talk about a defining game, the player all Red Sox Nation was eagerly anticipating flexed his muscles Saturday night in a big way. Against a future Hall-of-Fame pitcher, Cases’ first multi-homer game couldn’t have come at a better time for a baseball team wavering back-and-forth from being buyers or sellers at the MLB Trade Deadline.
Red Sox rookie slugger Triston Casas showing more comfort at the plate
With the Red Sox in the hunt of a Wild Card spot, the team couldn’t afford a sweep in the double header. Casas made sure that didn’t happen with the first of his two homers giving the team an early lead and the second coming in the bottom of the sixth inning to snap a 3-3 tie.
To use that word gain, the rookie slugger’s approach at the plate in facing Scherzer for the third battle was all about patience and looking for his pitch.
“I took a big swing on the 2-0 fastball that I had been missing,” Cases said following the game, via MLB.com. “I missed a couple in the second at-bat, as well. So I tried to regroup, tried to make a little mental adjustment in terms of where I wanted to try to see the ball to hit it as best as I could, because I kept missing that fastball.”
With a 2-1 count, Cases just recounted recollecting himself and remaining patient for the one pitch he could smash, and he certainly did that with the 428-foot blast on a 95-mph fastball. It was a swing that erupted the Fenway crowd and perhaps a swing and plate appearance that defined Casas’ arrival.
To the moon! Red Sox fans and the organization had to be over the moon watching Casas rock a pitcher like Scherzer. Now hitting .341 in his last 88 at-bats, the rookie is on a hot streak that has turned around the dismal start to the season at the plate.
With Saturday night’s performance, Casas has increased his overall batting average to .244 with 14 homers and 35 RBI. Most importantly, the confidence and growth at the plate is showing in a big way and credit goes to Red Sox manager Alex Cora and the organization for sticking with Cases through his struggles.
While the 6-foot-4, 238-pound first baseman can’t pinpoint when he started feeling comfortable at the plate, just being in the lineup consistently has helped him find his groove.
“I think its just been a steady progression for sure,” Cases said. “I can’t pinpoint exactly when I started to feel more comfortable. But I think as every at-bat has gone on, I’ve felt more and more comfortable at the plate. Things are starting to slow down. I’m starting to get a better awareness of my barrel, trying to get a better feel for my timing, as well.”
That awareness at the plate, especially how he won his at-bats against a savvy starter like Scherzer showcases both his physical and cerebral offensive talent. It didn’t start great, but Casas came to the majors with a lot of pressure on him. The Red Sox knew they had their answer at first base with Casas coming up the pike.
The defense can still use some improvement, but patience is starting to pay off for the Red Sox which could turn out to be the biggest value of the 2023 season.