Richards fades after strong start to second outing

Richards fades after strong start to second outing

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Garrett Richards' second spring start Saturday didn't go as planned -- he gave up five runs in four innings to the D-backs -- but there were positives to take away from the appearance.

For instance, the right-hander struck out Paul Goldschmidt, the 2013 runner-up for National League MVP, in the first inning. The at-bat stood out to manager Mike Scioscia.

"The first 20 pitches he threw were incredible," Scioscia said. "He just lost his rhythm out of the stretch. He was trying to find it and fell behind some hitters, forced some things. He threw some off-speed stuff just to feel his changeup, and those guys hit him pretty hard. ... It's in there, he just let some things get away from him as his outing got a little longer."

Richards has a rotation spot locked up after posting a 3.72 ERA over his final 13 starts last season.

Richards, 25, said afterward that he was not concerned about the outing.

Chris Gabel is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.