Brian McCann hit a two-run homer that helped chase Richards in a six-run opening frame, and the Yankees didn't have to fret in an 8-2 win over the Los Angeles Angels on Saturday night that stretched their winning streak to five.
"We're hitting 1s. We're hitting 2s. When you're hitting top-of-the-rotation starters, that's what good teams do," McCann said.
A night after giving up six runs in the ninth inning of an 8-7 win, New York had an early burst that enabled Adam Warren (4-4) to coast against the Angels, who fell behind 7-0 by the second. The AL East leaders have scored six or more runs in the first inning four times -- which the Yankees had not done since 1948, according to STATS.
"It just shows you that our offense is capable of being potent, even against the best pitchers," manager Joe Girardi said.
Richards (5-4) got in trouble when he walked Brett Gardner and Alex Rodriguez around Chase Headley's single. Mark Teixeira hit a sacrifice fly, Headley ran home on Richards' wild pitch and McCann homered into the right-field seats -- 26 of his 32 homers since joining New York have been at Yankee Stadium.
"We thought his swing was kind of built for this ballpark," Girardi said.
After singles by Carlos Beltran and Didi Gregorius, Stephen Drew grounded to Albert Pujols, who rather than step on first for an out threw to second. While umpire Tom Hallion called Gregorius out, replays showed shortstop Erick Aybar blocked the tag with his own foot, and the call was overturned by video review.
"It caught me and Aybar off guard," Gregorius said. "He tagged himself."
Ramon Flores struck out, and Gardner hit a two-run single that chased Richards. Before this year, the Yankees had not scored six or more runs in the first since July 30, 2011, against Baltimore.
A day after missing a game because of a sore foot, Beltran added an RBI single in the second off Cesar Ramos.
Warren threw a career-high 105 pitches, giving up two runs and four hits in 6 2/3 innings. He induced an inning-ending, double-play grounder from David Freese in the fourth and had a shutout until Johnny Giavotella's sacrifice fly in the fifth.
"I feel comfortable going deeper in the game," said Warren, switched from the bullpen to the rotation this year. "Early on, the game just seemed so much longer to me."
With his parents watching from the stands after making the trip from New Jersey, AL MVP Mike Trout hit his 15th home run in the sixth, an opposite-field drive to right that cut the gap to 7-2.
Los Angeles has lost four straight, matching its season high, and at 28-28 is at .500 for the 11th time this year.
Richards faced 10 batters and got only two outs, matching the shortest start of his career. He lasted 37 pitches, giving up six runs, five hits and two walks. Richards has alternated wins and losses in his last six starts.
"I can't hang my head on this," he said. "I'm just going through a rough patch right now."
McCann said a switch in orthotics alleviated the pain in his right foot. He had the old ones for about 3 1/2 years. "The arch on my old ones were pushing up against that muscle and it was causing them to spasm. Once that happened, it was hard to calm it down," he said.
Yankees: Beltran returned to the lineup after missing Friday's game with a sore foot.
Angels: C.J. Wilson (3-4) is 4-3 with a 3.07 ERA and two saves in 10 starts and 17 relief appearances against the Yankees.
MLB playoffs 2021 - Dynamic duo of Jose Altuve and Carlos Correa lead Houston Astros to ALCS Game 1 victory over Boston Red Sox
Astros come out on top in the series opener despite Kiké Hernández's display of October magic.
Altuve's costly error allows Red Sox to score
The Red Sox bring home a run as Jose Altuve has the ball bounce between his legs on what could have been an inning-ending double play.
Hernandez follows up spectacular catch with 448-foot blast
Enrique Hernandez ends the bottom of the second with a diving catch, and leads off the top of the third with a mammoth home run.
Homers from Altuve, Correa lift Astros to Game 1 win
Jose Altuve and Carlos Correa both homer into the Crawford Boxes as part of the Astros' victory over the Red Sox in Game 1 of the ALCS.
2021 MLB playoffs: Schedules, postseason bracket, analysis and updates
All the latest information about the teams, storylines and highlights of the 2021 MLB postseason, from the start of October through the World Series.
Stephen A.: Dodgers-Braves should have been a divisional series
Stephen A. Smith implores MLB to change its playoff format after the Giants drew the Dodgers in the first round despite both teams eclipsing 100 wins.