It was a reminder of what Wacha was when he came up with the Cardinals at 21 years of age. Their prized possession who rubbed shoulders with star pitcher Adam Wainwright and took command from all-time catcher Yadier Molina.
“This kid has done it,” was a declaration that the Sox have struck gold with Wacha through his first nine starts in 2022. Even though he had a 5.05 ERA with the Rays last season, they saw the adjustment toward the end despite the results. Wacha began implementing his four-seamer and breaking pitches more. No longer was it just cutters and changeups.
Yet even in the midst of a special feat that falls in line with some past success, even in the midst of the reminder, or declaration, or “this kid has done it,” having it all affirmed in real time makes it hard to suppress joy.
So, when Wacha induced a Shohei Ohtani ground out that cemented a 1-0 shutout for the righthander and his team over the Angels, you saw the emotion pour out once he hugged catcher Christian Vázquez near the first-base line.