TODAY: The Rangers officially announced the Richards deal. Jonathan Hernandez was placed on the 60-day injured list in the corresponding move, as Hernandez is still rehabbing after undergoing Tommy John surgery in April 2021.
The Athletic’s Levi Weaver reports (via Twitter) that Richards will earn $4.5MM in 2022, and the 2023 club option is worth $9MM. There is a $1MM buyout if the Rangers decline the option, so Richards’ total guarantee is $5.5MM.
MARCH 17, 10:38pm: It’s a one-year contract with an option for 2023, reports Jon Heyman of the MLB Network (on Twitter).
10:26pm: The Rangers are in agreement with Garrett Richards, as first reported by MLB Drops (Twitter link). The deal is pending a physical, writes Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News.
Richards hit the open market when the Red Sox declined a $10MM club option on his services, buying him out for $1.5MM. Boston also bought out southpaw Martín Pérez at the same time. They’ll reunite in Arlington, as Pérez signed a one-year deal to rejoin the Rangers last week.
The 33-year-old Richards has had a decade-long run in the big leagues as a starter. He looked like a mid-rotation or better arm during his best days with the Angels, but the righty’s career was thrown off by a series of injuries. He combined for 31 starts between 2016-19, with recurring elbow/biceps injuries culminating in a July 2018 Tommy John procedure. Richards worked 51 1/3 innings of 4.03 ERA ball over 14 outings (10 starts) with the Padres during the shortened 2020 season, and Boston signed him to a $10MM guarantee heading into last year.
That started unfortunately, as Richards posted a 5.22 ERA while allowing opponents to hit .300/.371/.497 in 22 starts. In mid-August, the Red Sox bumped him out of the rotation into a multi-inning relief role. He began well in his new situation but had a tough final couple weeks of the season. Altogether, Richards posted a 3.42 ERA in 26 1/3 innings over 18 relief appearances late in the year. He struck out a roughly average 24.8% of batters in relief while walking a slightly higher than par 10.6% of opponents.
The Rangers are planning to keep Richards in a relief role this season, Grant tweets. He averaged north of 94 MPH on his heater while generating swinging strikes at a slightly above-average rate on his curveball. Richards adds a high-powered arm to the middle to late innings for skipper Chris Woodward. He becomes the biggest bullpen pickup to date for the Rangers, whose bullpen finished in the bottom ten last season in strikeout/walk rate differential.
The Athletics/Rangers seesaw continues.
If this was 2015 I’d be excited for my rangers right now
But, if it was 2016 the Yankees would be a demolition team…. WS-bound without question.
If this was 2015 you’d have a reason to be
He was a pretty solid reliever for the Red Sox down the stretch last year, and I could see him continuing to be a solid reliever going forward.
But whatever you do Rangers, do not use him as a starter.
– Red Sox fan
I bet he signed to be a starter
@Evan_Grant tweeted that he’s hearing its a multi-inning relief role
Rangers are trying really hard to look relevant
And make sure there is a drug test included in the physical.
Why would you say that chalk?
Still in talks
He’s a coke head.
I’ve watched Richards for years with the Angels. Never heard that. What’s your source?
I never heard it either. He was so good until he got injured.
And coke is not a PED. If he has a problem, I don’t care except that I hope he gets help.
He was decent until forced to give up sticky substances last year, like several pitchers. Including a guy pitching for the NYY who got 30mAAV for several seasons.
johnsilver – that’s fine. I think that change affected a number of pitchers.
I’m curious about the cocaine addict accusation. I’ve never heard that nor read a report suggesting that in all the years I’ve watched Garrett.
Prov356: Haven’t seen his name in that Ped scandal from that Anaheim trainer. no idea what that poster is talking about and not once seen any article, anywhere written in regards to him and any type of drug, just that he was a chronic complainer of sticky stuff last year when the ban was enforced in.. June think it was??
He should be a useful reliever regardless, as another poster pointed out, held his velo well over just a cpl innings and just went with 2 pitches.
For sure silver. I really hope the best for him. He’s got talent and seems like a chill guy.
Not coke or PEDs, he was named in the Kay trial for purchasing drugs, probably oxy.
Surprised more isn’t made of his part in the Skaggs trial
Dusty Baker's tooth pick.
What part did he have?
see above posted by @chalk73
Not a Richards fan, Eh?
Ok, well seeing now that he will be used as a reliever is a relief to me (no pun intended). I was scared he was gonna slot into our rotation which is really weak to begin with. I can stand him in relief. Wonder if it is an MLB deal.
Yeah, he is a very volatile pitcher. Was awful
in April last year, very decent in May, then awful again until he moved to the bullpen. For a good 5-6 weeks, he was a pretty dominant reliever, but then September came around and he sucked again. As long as the Rangers didn’t guarantee him much, this should be a good lottery ticket move for them.
May have something to do with oxy and the Skaggs trial.
Hban, wasn’t he one of the guys complaining about taking spider tack away?
greatest luck to you, garrett!
Gets to spend spring training with his best friend, Trout.
Off topic, but kind of strange their is no article about Heyman saying the Phillies and Marlins are in on Nick Castellanos.
John Rocker fan club
Don’t think the Phillies would sign him after getting Schwarber, and don’t think the Marlins would give him the money/contract length.
Looked like he was done as a starter with Boston but seemed to reinvent himself in the pen. Depending on his use and role, it could be a good move.
50 mill in career earnings. Talented but always health issues. Same with Brett Anderson, almost 60 mill in career earnings. Teams still take a chance on them
how the hell did Brett Anderson get 60 million?
Pedro Martinez’s Mango Tree
First Martin Perez, now Garrett Richards? Trying to recreate the 2021 Red Sox bullpen?
Why is Martin Perez still employed!!!???
Why are you still in your mothers basement?!⚾️
jorge783 days ago
Why is Martin Perez still employed!!!???
Because he is a #4 SP, and you just don’t realize it.
Richards pitched better as the season went on and learned to pitch without the sticky stuff. I hope he does well in Texas
Took too long to turn him into a relief pitcher. I get why he and the teams wanted him as a starter, his stuff was always legit. But all those injuries, kid needed to be moved to the bullpen a good min ago. You watch, I bet now that he’ll be 100% committed to the bullpen, I bet he has a great year. If all goes well, may have just extended his career 5 years at least
Garret and Andrew Heaney are more than the late Tyler Skaggs friend.
They both have great stuff. But they lack mental fortitude to put hitters away. Just when you think they have it figured out, they revert to bad habits.
That’s difference between them and pitchers like John Lackey and Jared Weaver.
Every time they got pulled from a game they sit in dugout with that look on their face “ What just happened”?
The bullpen is the place for Richards. Lighten his innings and he might stay healthy
you are fully aware alex cora took him OUT of our rotation cause hes awful, right? when was he ‘solid’, he actually got demoted, cut then traded, what numbers are you looking at? the week he was an ‘average’ reliever?
edit: *he wasn’t traded in 2021.
i understand the optimism, but he will be the worst pitcher on that staff.
Grich is garbage.
Rich part ain’t wrong though
john lackey wasnt hated because of how he pitched, he was hated cause he publicly said ‘ the team and fans arent on my side, dont want me to be successful, ‘
great pitcher at times but an absolute basket-case, david price, same thing, once you say that, the fans are dead to you and dont care what you do or dont do, lackey just looked like whenever he pitched he was also getting a colonoscopy, guy was just miserable 24/7.
Price’s problems started when he got into a confrontation with Dennis Eckersley on a team flight. We all knew when Dombrowski signed him that he was not a good fit and would hate in Boston. Lackey always had an intense look on his face when he was pitching but i don’t remember him really being miserable, he was even lucky enough to miss the Bobby Valentine season
How do you expect someone’s lackey to feel?
I like Richards. I think he has potential still. A series of awful events have derailed him:
-Covering 1B his knee cap ended near his hip
-Close friend Skaggs died of a drug OD
Hopefully he can kick it up a notch this year for the Rangers. I’m rooting for him (unless they play the Angels).