4 Biggest ‘What ifs’ of the Boston Red Sox postseason
What if Garrett Richards had been healthy for the Red Sox postseason?
If you had told me that I’d regret a postseason run without Garrett Richards back when he was in the starting rotation, I would’ve told you to go to the nearest hospital to get your head checked.
But his demotion to the bullpen turned out to be a glow-up. In 22 starts, he’d posted a 5.22 ERA and opponents were teeing off him to the tune of a .300/.371/.497 and a .868 OPS. In 18 relief appearances, he had a 3.42 ERA and lowered opposing lineups to .240/.319/.340 and a .659 OPS. That ERA was raised from 2.49 after an overworked Richards gave up three earned runs in his final relief appearance of the season.
Richards was originally on the ALDS roster but was replaced with Matt Barnes after one appearance due to injury. He made a brief scoreless appearance in Game 1, recording one out, but that was it for the 33-year-old righty.
The Red Sox signed Richards to a one-year deal for $10 million with a pricey club option for 2022. His brief ALDS appearance might be the end of his tenure in Title Town.