Boston’s Porcello shoots for 10th win vs. Angels
BOSTON — Rick Porcello shoots to become the Boston Red Sox’s first 10-game winner of the season when he pitches for Boston against the Los Angeles Angels in the second game of a three-game series at Fenway Park Wednesday night.
The Red Sox remained a half-game behind the New York Yankees in the American League East by pounding out 10 extra-base hits in a 9-1 rout of the struggling Angels Tuesday night. They now send Porcello (9-3, 3.44 ERA) out to face the Angels’ Andrew Heaney (4-5, 3.43) in the middle game of the series.
Boston is 4-0 against the Angels this season, winning those games by a combined count of 36-4.
“We haven’t solved them,” Angels manager Mike Scioscia said after the Red Sox (53-27) hit four homers and six doubles in Tuesday’s win. “We’ve tried to make some adjustments. We’re going to obviously work on it tonight and try to make some adjustments and hopefully have a better shot tomorrow.
“They’ve taken it to us. There’s no way to sugarcoat it. We’ve got to do a lot of things better.
Porcello, who is 2-1 in four June starts, is just 7-7 with 5.51 ERA in 17 career starts against the Angels, who have lost 11 of their last 15 games.
In his one start against Los Angeles this season, Porcello pitched six shutout innings in Boston’s 9-0 victory on April 18.
Before Tuesday’s game, the Red Sox placed Thursday starter Steven Wright on the 10-day disabled list with a left knee problem. Brian Johnson, who has been in the bullpen, will make the start in the series and homestand finale.
Everyone in the starting lineup except Rafael Devers had at least one hit (in a 14-hit attack) and he scored a run.
“We’re swinging it great, you know, I think all up and down the lineup,” said Mookie Betts, who hit his 20th home run of the season. “It’s kind of contagious. Everybody’s getting hits and what not.”
The ever-streaky Bradley is 6-for-7 in the last two games to raise his batting average to .199.
“You know, he’s been swinging the bat great,” Betts said. “A couple line drives that go five feet one way or the other, we’re looking at a completely different number (average) that’s on the board.”
Heaney is also 2-1 in four June starts and has allowed two earned runs or fewer in eight of his 13 starts this season. He will make only his second appearance against Boston, his first at Fenway. He beat the Red Sox in Anaheim in 2015, yielding two runs in seven innings.
No one on the current Boston roster has more than three at-bats against Heaney. The team is 2-for-14 (.143) against him with Xander Bogaerts collecting both hits in his three at-bats (.667).
Ian Kinsler is 11-for-22 (.500) against Porcello, while Albert Pujols is 10-for-29 (.345) with a homer, while Cole Calhoun is 7-for-22 (.318) with two homers. Justin Upton is 2-for-12 (.167) and Luis Valbuena 4-for-19 (.211).