Garrett Richards had a lot to prove coming into Tuesday’s series opener vs. the Mets. After laboring through his last start vs. Toronto, the right-hander showed up to Citi Field a new pitcher.
In a 2-1 victory against the Mets, Richards appeared to be in total control of his fastball, with a noticeable change in his delivery.
Ahead of the series opener, manager Alex Cora mentioned the work Richards has been putting in between starts.
“He worked hard in between starts with his mechanics and all that,” Cora said. “Hopefully that helps him to harness his pitches and to be around the strike zone.”
Tuesday’s performance indicates that Richards’ mechanical adjustments have indeed paid off. Working through seven innings, the righty struck out 10 and walked none. His only blemish was a second-inning homer to Jeff McNeil, who he later got swinging on a 1-2 fastball to end the fourth.
The shift in Richards’ effectiveness was evident from the start, opening the game with a 1-2-3 inning that ended with a Pete Alonso strikeout. After needing 92 pitches to get through 4 2/3 vs. the Blue Jays, Richards threw 93 (70 for strikes) in Tuesday’s seven-inning effort.