Padres Ink Clayton Richard for $6-Million Through 2019 Season

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Credit: USA Today Sports

The San Diego Padres and starting pitcher Clayton Richard came to an agreement Wednesday afternoon on a two-year deal.

Richard was originally acquired by the Padres in July of 2009, when the team traded Jake Peavy to the Chicago White Sox. He had some successful years with the Friars in his first stint with the club.

After the 2013 season, he hung around in free agency until the Diamondbacks took a stab at him then decided he wasn’t what they were looking for.

The Pirates then signed Richard after the 2014 season, which he missed out on because of injury. The Cubs bought Richard in July of ’15 and brought him on as a bullpen guy for their championship campaign. However, he was released in August of 2016  (he did however get a world series ring).

Just three days after his release by the Cubs, the Padres swooped in and brought on a much-needed starting pitcher. So after all of this, it’s weird and still somewhat exciting to say that the pitcher who has hurled more innings in Petco Park then any other pitcher will be signing on for two more years.

The ground-ball pitching Richard, has turned out to be one of the more surprising a veteran additions the Padres have had in recent years.

He finished the 2016 season with the Padres, starting in nine of 11 games with an impressive ERA of 2.52 in 53.2 innings.

This season, he has pitched well but has had some bad luck. The 34-year-old owns a record of 7-14 with an ERA of 4.82 over 185 innings. His FIP backs up that Richard has pitched better than his ERA and record show by sitting at 4.32. He has also stacked up 136 K’s so far as opposed to just 55 walks. He also has a ground out-to-air out ratio of 2.41 and allowed just 23 home runs.

Clayton Richard is projected to finish with 200+ innings, which will be the third time he’s done this in his career and with the Padres (2010, 2012).

His addition for the next two years gives all the young pitchers someone to look up to. It is clear that Richard has a great work ethic and is a team player. He will provide a great mentor to players like Cal Quantrill, Joey Lucchesi, Eric Lauer and others.

The two-year contract is very affordable to the team.

Clayton Richard is consistent, he eats innings, puts the team in situations to win, and keeps the ball out of the air. With the majority of Padres top pitching talent in the low-to-mid minor leagues, signing Richard through ’19 will give the team at least one guaranteed spot in the starting line up they won’t need to worry about.

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