Sunday, December 5, 2010

EX-NL ROOKIE OF YEAR WILLIAMSON PITCHING FOR MEX PAC SLOT

"Have Fastball - Will Travel." Former National League Rookie of the Year Scott Williamson is hoping to spend the winter pitching in Mexico. Williamson won ROY honors in 1999 after going 12-7 with 19 saves and a 2.41 ERA for the Cincinnati Reds. Now 34, the 6’0” righty spent nine seasons in the majors, fashioning a 28-28 record with 55 saves and a 3.36 ERA (with 510 strikeouts in 439 innings) before arm miseries derailed his career.

After his last MLB outing with Baltimore in 2007, Williamson struggled to get his groove back before spending much of 2010 out of the game while spending eight weeks at the Athletes Performance training facility before signing with the Somerset Patriots of the independent Atlantic League during the season and was dominant, going 11-for-11 in save opportunities with 21 strikeouts in 16 innings. Moreover, his fastball was clocked a number of times at 97 MPH and he appeared to regain his once-nasty slider. “I’m stronger than I’ve been in years,” Williamson stated after the season, and now he wants to spend time in the Mex Pac to show big league organizations in need of pitching that his strong showing last summer was no fluke.

Agent Tom Godfrey says several MLB teams have told him they want to see Williamson pitch in the Mexican Pacific League this winter. “They’ll like what they see,” the pitcher says. “I can help someone win down there. I just need a chance to prove it.”