Lack of control catches up with Richards

Lack of control catches up with Richards

ANAHEIM -- Garrett Richards' flaws and mistakes during his last few games weren't anything new. It's just that it took until his past few starts for them to hamper his results.

Richards has struggled with falling behind batters in each of his six starts this season. But in his first three or four starts, manager Mike Scioscia said Richards would come up with that one pitch that would even up a 2-1 or 1-0 count and get him back in the at-bat.

He just wasn't able to make those same pitches in his last two starts.

"I think the start in Toronto and the start last night, some of his flaws showed up," Scioscia said on Friday. "Some of his flaws showed up in some of the earlier games, but he managed to make pitches to get out of it. He pitched really some terrific games leading up to these last two. He just wasn't able to get back into counts as well as earlier."

Though Richards had walked 11 batters through the first three starts of the season, he had surrendered just two earned runs in 20 innings (0.90 ERA). But in his last three outings, the 24-year-old gave up 20 runs (15 earned) on 28 hits and eight walks in 15 1/3 innings. He gave up seven runs and 10 hits in 4 1/3 innings on Thursday night.

Scioscia said he's sure Richards will be back with the Angels at some point, but combine his struggles with the fact that the team was thin and overworked in the bullpen, Richards was the odd man out.

"You can see the stuff is there, the talent's there," Scioscia said. "I think that as he gets a little more experience, some of these little flaws will start to evaporate, and he'll become a really, really strong pitcher."