Former star pitcher J.R. Richard joins Gold Sox festivities in Marysville

Published: Friday, Jun. 7, 2013 - 12:37 pm

Former Houston Astros star J.R. Richard will be in Marysville tonight to participate in the Gold Sox baseball club's annual Faith Night.

The Gold Sox are part of the Horizon Air Summer Series, a competition among Northern California teams featuring top college players.

A concert will be held at 5:30 p.m. Richard will speak at 6:45, with the first pitch between the Gold Sox and Menlo Park Legends set for 7:35.

Richard was one of the premier pitchers in the majors before suffering a stroke before a game in 1980.

After his professional baseball career ended, a number of failed business ventures left Richard homeless and destitute for a period.

Richard has since turned his life around and is now a minister and also works for the Astros.

The Gold Sox feature a number of former area prep stars, including Jesuit's Brad Gerig and Louis Mejia; Bella Vista's Shawn Wheeler and Tommy Lininger; Woodcreek's Shaun Mize, Granite Bay's Riley Drongesen, Oak Ridge's Alex Fitchett and Yuba City's Ryan Pope and Chandler Eden.

Eden is a recent Yuba City High graduate who pitched a no-hitter in the Sac-Joaquin Section Division III championship game.

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