If the Red Sox are to be believed they don’t need bats and gloves to break out of what has become an alarming 2-8 slump since May 2. They need mortars and pestles.

“We’ve just got to keep grinding,” manager John Farrell said firmly after yesterday’s 12-4 Mother’s Day debacle at Fenway against the Toronto Blue Jays, a loss low-lighted by five Blue Jays’ home runs.

“We’re not too far away,” catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia argued after the Sox slid further out of first place in the AL East, dropping into third behind the Yankees and Orioles. “We just have to keep grinding.”

Across the clubhouse, starter Ryan Dempster, who allowed six runs, seven hits and three home runs in five innings, said stoically, “We need to keep working hard. We have to keep grinding away for the whole year.”

If that’s the case perhaps Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington should go out and sign a half-dozen Mayan Indians, because nobody could grind better than those guys. They kept a dynasty alive for generations by doing it, pounding maize into corn meal the way the Sox of late have not been able to pound hits into runs.

The latter is especially true in game-altering situations. One can bemoan the tattered state of the bullpen at the moment with Joel Hanrahan gone for the season, Andrew Bailey again on the disabled list and Junichi Tazawa struggling in his inherited role of closer. But the real problem has been, well, that they’re not grinding out any hits when they most need them.