The Sox strike again: Worcester wins another 1-run game thanks to a solid bullpen to get a 3-2 win
Preview (September 6, 2023): Worcester Red Sox (72-60, 3rd place/9 GB in the International League East) vs Gwinnett Stripers (61-70, 7th place/14.5 GB in the International League West)
While the regular season only has a little over 2 weeks left, don't tell either team they have little to play for.
The Worcester Red Sox (the AAA affiliate of the Boston Red Sox) are 9 GB of winning the division title (2nd half) and are 12 games about .500. With leading offensive players including Bobby Dalbec (.267 BA with 31 HR, 71 RBI's, and 17 SB's), David Hamilton (.253 BA with 17 HR, 52 RBI's, and an impressive 53 SB's), and Ronaldo Hernandez (..247 BA with 17 HR and 64 RBI's), the team has players who have seen time at the big league level (Dalbec) or are a call away (even this late in the season) from being there. Starting pitcher Andres Nunez (4-2, 6.17 ERA) looks to help the team improve on its modest 2-game winning streak, including their series opening 6-5 win over the Stripers (on September 5th).
The Gwinnett Stripers (the AAA affiliate of the Atlanta Braves) enter tonight's game winning 6 of their last 10 and looking to reach and break the .500 level. Starting pitcher Justus Sheffield (2-5, 7.29 ERA) looks to halt Worcester's offense while Jesus Aguliar (.289 BA with 35 RBI's), Braden Shewmake (.230 BA with 13 HR, 63 RBI's, and 24 SB's), and Joe Dunand (.279 BA with 17 HR's and 50 RBI's) look to provide the offensive punch needed to position the team to a win and even the series.
Prior to the game, Joe Dunand takes time to speak with us. He provides timely insight (as do all the players we've interviewed this year) regarding his individual growth, team chemistry, and maintaining a love for the game and focus on it (you way watch the full interview below):
Game highlights: The Red Sox relief (allowing 1 run over their last 8 innings) results in a 3-2 win and a 2-0 series lead.
Gwinnett would get on the scoreboard in the bottom of the first inning. They would get the bases loaded with nobody out, but Jesus Aguilar would hit into a double play. The Stripers' Daulton Guthrie would score to give them a 1-0 lead. They would add another run in the bottom of the second thanks to Guthrie's RBI single to make it a 2-0 lead.
After Justus Sheffield is lifted (2.2 IP allowing no runs or hits along with 4 strikeouts and 2 walks), the Sox would strike.
Bradley Zimmer's 2-run HR to right center in the top of the 5th off Gwinnett's Beau Burrows would tie the game and later in the inning, Bobby Dalbec's RBI single gives Worcester a 3-2 lead.
Both teams would have outstanding pitching efforts to keep each other at bay, but Worcester would hold on for a 3-2 win.
The Red Sox Chris Murphy would get the win and improve to 2-3 overall (4.1 IP, allowing 1 run [earned] with 3 hits along with 7 strikeouts and 2 walks). AJ Politi earns his 13th save and the bullpen would go 8 innings (allowing 1 run on 3 hits) to shut down the Gwinnett offense. Bradley Zimmer (1 for 4 with a HR and 2 RBI's) and Bobby Dalbec (1 for 4 with 1 RBI) provide the team's offense.
The Stripers' Beau Burroughs would take the loss and drop to 3-4 overall. Dalton Guthrie (2 for 4 with 1 RBI) provides most of the offense for Gwinnett.
The series continues through this Sunday, September 10th.
Notes: All video is recorded by ASnortonccs (click HERE to visit our Instagram), along with the first photo grid. The second photo grid is recorded by EmoryRose Photography (click HERE to visit their Instagram). To view the box score, click HERE.