If you’re going to have a terrible month, you can argue that it’s better to have it now rather than in September.
That said, and even with about a week remaining, May has been an attrocious month of the Red Sox, made all the worse by the eventual uptick in what had been attriocious Red Sox pitching.
Boston’s .218 batting average thus far this month is the absolute lowest in the majors. The Sox are also last in a variety of offensive categories including runs scored (44), RBI (43), stolen bases (2), slugging (.351) and in OPS (.637).
Red Sox offense in May is not just bad, it’s historically bad. Unless the bats suddenly spring to life, this month will go down as the club’s worst May batting average since at least 1914.
The Boston Globe’s Alex Speier points out that the Red Sox’ .259 batting average on balls in play this season (i.e., at-bats that ended in something other than a home run, a strike out, or a walk), is not just the worst in the majors, it lumps the Sox with only four other teams since 2000 with a BABIP below .275 — and none of those teams dipped below .269!
Next up, Angels
The Red Sox should have feasted on sub-.500 clubs like the Athletics, Mariners, and Rangers. Instead, they went 5-5 against them with one series win, a split, and a series loss, respectively. Over the 10 games Boston was outscored 22-31. In all, the Red Sox have gone 13-13 this season against sub-.500 clubs.
So now the 21-20 Angels are in for a 3-game series at Fenway. The Sox are 6-9 against clubs playing at or above .500 this season.
The Red Sox are 332-294 for all-time vs the Angels, with even the hapless 2014 Sox taking 5 wins of their 7 matchups.
Rick Porcello (4-2, 4.26 ERA) gets the start on Friday vs the Angels Garrett Richards (3-2, 2.29 ERA). Last time out Porcello earned a win over the Mariners pitching 6.2 innings and allowing just 2 runs and 6 strikeouts. Richards, meanwhile, was the loser in his last outing, despite a strong 7.2 innings of work with just 2 runs allowed and 7 strikeouts vs the Orioles.
In 8 starts thus far Porcello has allowed at least one home run in all but 3 games, including 2 in his most recent game last Saturday. Richards has allowed just one home run in his 6 starts of 2015.
Against Porcello the Angels have 3 with a career batting average of .300 or better (minimum 6 at-bats): Chris Ianenetta is 3-for-7 (.429), Mike Trout in 5-for-15 (.333), and Albert Pujols is 4-for-13 (.308).