If the Angels let it.
"Look, we can go in one of two directions," catcher
"Or we could say, 'Hey, you know what? Spring training starts in five or six months; we'll see you then.' Which one is it going to be? I think everyone knows the answer. We have no choice but to keep going."
Richards, 26, the team's best starting pitcher, suffered the injury in the second inning Wednesday, when he caught a spike in the dirt while running to cover first base on a potential double-play ball and fell awkwardly to the ground.
Medical personnel tended to Richards for eight minutes before he was wheeled off the field on a stretcher. Richards flew to Los Angeles on Thursday morning, and an MRI test confirmed the injury, which could cause Richards to miss the start of 2015.
"Obviously, it's devastating news for Garrett," General Manager
But will the Angels? Veteran left-hander
LeBlanc, 30, went 10-3 with a 4.00 earned-run average in 21 starts for Salt Lake and pitched particularly well in his last nine games, going 5-1 with a 2.89 ERA.
"The guys in the organization are very pleased with the way he's throwing," Manager
He is no Richards, though. Richards went 13-4 with a 2.61 ERA and 164 strikeouts in 168 2/3 innings, and his dominating stuff — 96-mph fastball, sharp-breaking slider, big overhand curve — would match up well with the best pitchers in the league, especially in the playoffs or a one-game wild-card playoff.
"You're never going to replace a guy like Garrett with one pitcher," Scioscia said. "But it doesn't mean we're not going to be able to reach our goal as a cumulative pitching staff."
Dipoto, who made one trade Thursday, acquiring infielder Gordon Beckham from the
"We want to make ourselves better ... but picking up those household names, the top-of-the-rotation guys, that's not going to happen in August," Dipoto said. "We're realistic about what may be out there."