Friday, September 11, 2009

J.R. Richard

J.R. Richard began and ended his career with Houston. His first game was 9/5/71; his final game was 7/14/80.

The last half of his major league career was by far his best; in fact, Richard was considered one of the best pitchers in baseball. He led the NL twice in strike outs, once in ERAs, among others.

Unfortunately he had a mild stroke on July 30, 1980. He almost made a comeback but because of his health that never happened. Then things only got worse. He was swindled out of a large amount of money, then lost even more after his first divorce. Richard remarried, only to divorce again. This time he would lose his home. Broke and with no home, one of the greatest players to have ever pitched for the Astros ended up living under a bridge.

Times are better for J.R. now. He's been involved in community work in Houston with children and with the ministry.

There's a lot more that can be written about J.R. and his rise to fame and his troubled past but I won't go into all those details. However, I found a video that ESPN did several years ago that is very interesting to watch. The quality may not be the best but if you've got a few minutes be sure to watch it.

Sent off TTM on 11/19/99; received 7/1/00

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