August 19, 2012; San Diego, CA, USA; San Diego Padres starting pitcher Clayton Richard (33) throws during the seventh inning against the San Francisco Giants at Petco Park. Mandatory Credit: Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports
Former San Diego Padres’ pitcher Clayton Richard threw off a mound for the first time since undergoing a pair of shoulder surgeries last season. For the first time, throwing the ball didn’t seem like a mundane task that Richard had performed over and over again since he was a child in Indiana, a prep star on both the gridiron and the diamond, and during his time in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Richard is hoping that by continuing to rehab his shoulder, that a big league team in search of pitching will give him another opportunity.
"“Anyone who’s pitched before knows the feeling of really letting a ball go — just the feeling of it coming out, the sound of it hitting the glove. It’s something I really missed, and to be able to do that the last couple of weeks has been a lot of fun.” (h/t Nathan Baird, IndyStar.com)"
Richard continues to throw, first with a 30-pitch session, and following that up with a pair of sessions within a few days of that initial session. He’s been using minor league catcher Jordan Comadena and players from his high school, McCutheon, who wanted the work during the summer months.
While Richard is feeling confident in his ability to come all the way back, he has yet to see how hard he’s been throwing. He feels if he sees that his velocity is down, he will over do it, and perhaps re-injure himself unnecessarily. Richard knows that rehab is a process and when the time is right, he’ll break out the radar gun. He hasn’t thrown in front of scouts, and doesn’t plan to until he can go full boar. His hope is to return to the professional ranks soon, and knows he can’t take the process for granted.