Takeaway #1: Garrett Richards proves Red Sox right
Going into this series with the Mets I made a point of putting my focus on the pitching and stated that it would be the story of the last two days. Well, I was right in my assessment, to a point. I am man enough to admit when I’m wrong and at least in his most recent start, Garrett Richards proved me wrong. I have been hard on Richards since the signing because I couldn’t figure out why Chaim Bloom would sign an oft-injured starter for $10M. What we saw on Tuesday night was the answer to my question.
I’ve been hard on Richards and I think rightfully so. He’s got a hefty salary for a guy with a questionable track record. He also had a rollercoaster spring that bled into the regular season with massive inconsistency. That inconsistency continued on Tuesday night but it went in a direction that the Red Sox should be thrilled about.
Through four starts in 2021 Richards had been all over the place and hadn’t been able to truly settle in. Teams would beat him up but then he’d get comfortable and plug the hole in the dam. But there were also nights where he’d be the definition of awful and despite not wanting to make excuses, he’d have plenty.
I thought Boston would need to score a dozen to balance would what Richards could give up to New York and that just wasn’t the case. He would toss 7 strong innings and gave up just 7 hits while striking out 10 and walking none. Just for a frame of reference, going into Tuesday Richards had a 12-13 K/BB ratio. Now he sits at a much nicer 22-13 and had a start that was more than worthy of $10M.
As a West Coast pitcher for his entire career, it may just need to warm up some more for Richards to fully hit his potential in Boston. After all, once it gets to summer he won’t need to worry about that damn coat anymore.