LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 13: Professional race car driver Danica Patrick and singer Justin Bieber attend The 2011 ESPY Awards at Nokia Theatre L.A. Live on July 13, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Christopher Polk/Getty Images for ESPN)
Anaheim's relief corps have been a mess of late Starter Garrett Richards left Monday's game with an injury in the first inning, forcing the bullpen to go 8+ innings, and necessitating the addition of two new arms for yesterday's game.
Needing another fresh arm for the bullpen, the Angels are entering the Wayback Machine and purchasing the contract of Jerome Williams.
Williams, still just 29, was ranked the #19 prospect in the game by Baseball America prior to both the 2001 season (when he was sandwiched between Alex Escobar and Bobby Bradley) and the 2002 season (when he was between Josh Hamilton and Brandon Phillips). In 2003, he fell to #50, but was in good company...the five guys ahead of him were Aaron Heilman, Travis Hafner, Angel Guzman, Jeff Mathis, and Wilson Betemit, while the five behind him were Ervin Santana, Bryan Bullington, Andy Sisco, Zack Greinke, and Juan Rivera.
In any case, he had success with the Giants in 2003 and 2004, and was a guy I really wanted the Rangers to try and go get. San Francisco traded him in May, 2005, along with David Aardsma, to the Chicago Cubs for LaTroy Hawkins. Williams pitched well the rest of 2005, then posted an ERA north of 7 in 42 1/3 IP with the Cubs and Nationals in 2006 and 2007, and has been out of the majors ever since.
Williams pitched in the Cal League, the PCL, and in an Independent League in 2008, was terrible in the PCL in 2009, and then apparently didn't pitch in 2010.
Pitching for Salt Lake City in the PCL this season, though, he's been solid, and probably wouldn't embarrass himself as a long man for the Angels, for however long he ends up being up.