Upgrading the rotation was an off-season priority for the Red Sox, which on Wednesday officially announced a $ 10 million one-year deal with right-hander Garrett Richards. As a 15-game winner for the Angels in 2015, Richards has spent his entire career on the West Coast and only logged 198 2/3
Upgrading the rotation was an off-season priority for the Red Sox. They officially announced a one-year right-handed agreement for $ 10 million
A 15-game winner for the Angels in 2015, Richards has spent his entire career on the West Coast, recording only 198 2/3 innings in the past five seasons due to injury. He spent last year with the Padres finishing the race 2-2 with an ERA of 4.03 over 10 starts and four relieves.
“At this point in my career, winning is the main factor in deciding where to play,” said Richards. “Having a historic franchise like the Red Sox that has interest in me got me to play for them. I saw it as a challenge to play in this division, but also to go to a team that I know gets runs and has a lot of fun. These guys always look like they’re having fun. “
Richards was operated on by Tommy John, which shortened his 2018 season. He returned to make three starts for the Padres in year 19 and was healthy during the shortened season 20. He held right-handed at an average of 0.189 and an OPS of 0.589. San Diego put him in the bullpen from mid-September through the end of the year.
Richards said he received positive reviews about Boston from infielder Mitch Moreland, a Padres teammate last season. To make room on the 40-man roster, Boston has designated right-hander Joel Payamps for use.
“I spent a lot of time in rehab getting back on the field and making sure I could keep the same things I always had,” said Richards. “I think it’s just a credit to my hard work and the people who have been around to help me get to this point. It took many hours, a lot of time and effort to get me back on the field. “
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In 187 career appearances, including 128 starts, Richards has set a 47-41 record with an ERA of 3.62. He’s an important part of a rotation that will include Eduardo Rodriguez, Nathan Eovaldi, Nick Pivetta and Martín Pérez.
At the start of this off-season, the Sox landed another downhill piece in Matt Andriese that can start or relieve. Ace Chris Sale isn’t expected until mid-season as he’s recovering from surgery on Tommy John.
“I think it’s solid and when you get Chris Sale back it will be a great addition to any rotation,” said Richards. “It will be a chance for us to go out there and have bad luck. I know we’re going to get runs; these are historically in Boston. I feel like every time I’ve ever played against Boston there have been no fewer than five runs. “
The 42-year-old Richards was the Angels’ 42nd overall winner in the 2009 MLB Draft and had his best season in 2014 when he went 13: 4 with 2.61 ERA in 26 starts. His year ended early with a start at Fenway Park when he injured his left knee while trying to cover the first base.
“It was a long time ago. I wrote that in the past,” said Richards. “I haven’t had any problems since then.”
Richards has only allowed 0.75 home runs per nine innings in his career, the second-lowest mark in the majors since 2011 (min. 500 innings). He averaged 95.1 miles per hour on his fastball last season and threw the field 46.3 percent of the time. He also uses a slider, sinker, and curve to get a 39.5 percent whiff rate with his slider.
“If I can get two hits without throwing someone a slider, I’ll probably have a pretty high success rate,” said Richards. “I look forward to going there with my teammates and building relationships. I think a good rotation is one that enjoys being with each other and talking about the game. So I look forward to choosing these brains. “