08/09/11 7:00 PM ET
Angels tab prospect Richards for Wednesday
Weaver's absence opens door for righty from Double-A
By Joey Nowak / MLB.com
Angels manager Mike Scioscia announced before Tuesday's series opener against the Yankees that the club will call up the 23-year-old right-hander to start Wednesday's game in the Bronx in place of struggling pitcher Joel Pineiro, who has been moved to the bullpen. Richards is currently the fourth-best prospect in the Angels system, according to MLB.com.
With Pineiro demoted and ace Jered Weaver serving a six-game suspension, the Angels are forced to rely on their second rookie starter of the year, having also called on Tyler Chatwood this season.
"I think it's great," Scioscia said of Richards' opportunity. "I think it's a great challenge for a youngster. We think he's going to pitch his game. If he can come into an atmosphere like Yankee Stadium and pitch a good game, you know how much confidence you can take away form that?"
Scioscia said the team would wait until Wednesday to announce a corresponding roster move.
"We have an idea of which way we'll go, but you never know how you'll come out of a game," Scioscia said.
Richards has turned heads at Double-A Arkansas, racking up 100 strikeouts in 141 innings, though he has occasionally battled command issues, walking 40. He also owns a 12-2 record and a 3.06 ERA.
Scioscia said on Tuesday that he can't say "if it's going to be one start or 10 starts," but the team would be open to a variety of possibilities with the youngster.
"We'll see where this leads, but we'll be fluid here until we get an indication of exactly which direction we're going to be going," Scioscia said.
There was talk of the Angels possibly taking a piece from their bullpen -- namely left-hander Hisanori Takahashi -- but Scioscia said, in the end, that would prove to be too much of a disruption.
"If it was one start and we were filling with somebody who is on our team right now, the disruption would have been real," the Angels skipper said. "It would have set us back for a while."
Richards, out of the University of Oklahoma, was a compensation pick of the Angels in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft. He was a Texas League All-Star this season with the Travelers.
Halos think Trumbo can handle jump to No. 5
NEW YORK -- For much of the season, Angels manager Mike Scioscia has been hesitant to move Mark Trumbo up in the lineup despite the rookie slugger's power display amid a low-scoring offense.
This week at Yankee Stadium, Scioscia may have found his first opportunity.
The Angels skipper hinted on Tuesday that it may be time for a change and moved Trumbo to the No. 5 spot in the order from his regular sixth or seventh spot.
"We scored four runs in the last series and fortunately won two games," Scioscia said. "If we score four runs in this series, I don't know if we'll be feeling the same way."
Trumbo, who entered Tuesday's series opener with a team-high 22 home runs and 63 RBIs, could become the first Angels rookie to lead the club in both categories.
Still, Scioscia admitted he has wanted to avoid putting more pressure on the young first baseman. But the Angels skipper said the time has come to make an adjustment in the order.
"I think the one thing we've been a little guarded about is not putting too much on Mark right now, being a young guy," Scioscia said. "But going into this last third of the season, if he can do more of what he's doing and connecting with guys on base, it might make us more productive."