Angels Notes: Garrett Richards continues slow march to return to rotation
ANAHEIM — Garrett Richards pitched “very well” in a simulated game Friday afternoon in Arizona, according to Angels manager Mike Scioscia, and if all goes well and there are no setbacks, the right-hander’s next appearance could be with Triple-A Salt Lake.
Scioscia couldn’t, or wouldn’t, say when it might be. Or even guarantee it would happen.
“With rehabs, I think you come to find out everything’s in pencil,” Scioscia said.
Richards pitched only once this season before a biceps strain sidelined him April 6. He was unavailable to the Angels for the 126th game this season, when they opened a three-game series against the AL West-leading Houston Astros at Angel Stadium.
The Angels have targeted a September return to the rotation for Richards, who has been working out at the club’s spring training facility in Tempe. He threw the equivalent of three innings Friday, after completing a similar simulated game Monday.
“You definitely want to chart a course for what’s best for a player, and that’s what we’ll look at,” said Scioscia, who declined to estimate how many starts Richards would need in Salt Lake before he’s sound enough to rejoin the Angels’ rotation. “There are so many variables that go into it.”
Salt Lake’s season ends Labor Day Weekend, so Richards’ starts could be limited.
“All the numbers coming out of today were terrific,” Scioscia said. “But we need to have Garrett go out there and continue to build stamina and show that he’s healthy.”
The Angels will induct former right fielder Vladimir Guerrero into the club’s Hall of Fame in a ceremony before Saturday’s game against the Astros. Guerrero batted .319, hit 173 home runs, drove in 616 runs and led the Angels in smiles in each of his six seasons between 2004 and ’09.
“He meant so much to us in those years we had, […]