The Los Angeles Angels opened a seven-game road trip in Boston against the Red Sox last night. The game was on Apple TV+ which felt like a bad sign from the beginning but had Wayne Randazzo on the call so I thought maybe the Angels could squeak this one out.
The Halos fell in Boston 5-3, in what was easily the most frustrating loss of the season. The team is 7-6 but should be closer to 11-2 or 10-3. They continue to throw away games they should be winning, and that can absolutely cost them as they try and get back to the postseason.
The Angels played an ugly game and suffered an ugly result. Here're some takeaways.
1) The LA Angels offense can be dynamic, but their lack of clutch hitting has been costly
The Angels offense has immense potential. We've seen it this season. When they're clicking they're extremely hard to stop. They have their home run and RBI leader Logan O'Hoppe hitting ninth most days!
We've seen them score 20 runs in two days against the Blue Jays. We've seen them put up an 11-run inning on the second game of the season. The issue is, the offense has been inconsistent and that mainly comes from a lack of clutch hitting.
The Angels have just 25 hits in 113 at-bats with runners in scoring position. That .221 batting average in those situations is good for 27th in the league. It's hard to win games when you're 27th in the league at hitting with runners in scoring position.
Last night the Angels had one hit in 14 at-bats in those spots. In the fourth inning the Angels had runners on first and second with nobody out. They did not score. In the fifth the Angels had first and second with one out. They did not score. In the sixth the Angels had first and second with nobody out. They did not score. In the seventh the Angels had second and third with nobody out. They managed just one run. In the eighth the Angels had first and second with one out. They did not score.
See what I mean? They had opportunity after opportunity to score, yet they managed just three runs. They had 11 hits, drew five walks, and had a hit batsman. That's three runs scored with 17 base runners. Unacceptable.
The Angels hit a ton of home runs and that's great, but they have to find other ways to score. If they can't get a clutch single once in a while, the team won't go very far.