Matthew Williams (minors02)
Note: This page is for Matthew Williams, pitcher for the Australian national team. For others with similar names, click here.
Matthew Jarrad Williams
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 6' 1", Weight 180 lb.
- High School St. Gregory's College
Matthew Williams signed with the Minnesota Twins shortly before his 17th birthday. In the 2004 World Junior Championship, he allowed 5 hits and 3 runs in 2 innings, taking a loss. He debuted in Australia in the 2005 Claxton Shield for the Australian Provincials, allowing 5 runs in 2 1/3 innings and taking a loss. Matthew made his USA debut later that summer, pitching for the GCL Twins (3-2, 3 Sv, 1.93, 42 K in 37 1/3 IP) and Fort Myers Miracle (0 R in 2 IP). In 2006, the right-hander allowed 3 runs in six innings for the Australian Provincials.
In the minor leagues in 2006, Williams went 4-2 with a save and a 3.89 ERA for the Elizabethton Twins. He struck out 41 in 39 1/3 innings but also allowed a .301 opponent batting average. In the 2007 Shield competition, he had a 1-1, 1.42 record for the New South Wales Patriots. In the Twins chain, he spent time with Elizabethton (3 R in 3 IP) and the Beloit Snappers (1-1, Sv, 2.64 in 18 G).
In the 2008 Claxton Shield, Williams went 1-0 with a 2.38 ERA and struck out 17 in 11 1/3 innings. He tied for 5th in the tournament in strikeouts. He spent the summer with Beloit (2-0, 7 Sv, 2.09, 29 H in 38 2/3 IP) and Fort Myers (2-2, 3.35 in 20 G). He had a 3.60 ERA in limited work in the 2009 Claxton Shield. He was then on the provisional Australian roster for the 2009 World Baseball Classic but did not make the final cut. He again pitched in the summer for Beloit (1-2, 5 Sv, 4.15) and Fort Myers (3-0, Sv, 2.88). His 48 games pitched were 9th in the Twins chain.
He did make his Australian national team debut in the 2009 Baseball World Cup. He allowed a two-run homer to Kuo-Min Lin to blow a 5-3 lead over Taiwan but Australia rallied to win. He then got the win over Team Canada. He again served up a two-run homer, to Abel Martínez of Mexico, to close a 6-3 lead to 6-5 but Adam Bright came in to relieve and Australia hung up (with three other pitchers wrapping up the inning after Williams). In a 2-2 game against the Dutch national team, he came up big, relieving Bright with two on and retiring Sidney de Jong in the clutch. Australia scored 3 in the bottom of the 8th and Williams faced the minimum in the 9th for the win. He finished the event 2-0 with a 6.35 ERA in five games. In the 2009/2010 Claxton Shield, he pitched two games but allowed five walks and five runs in one inning to post the tournament's highest ERA.
In 2010, Williams pitched for Fort Myers (3-2, Sv, 3.88) and the New Britain Rock Cats (2-3, 3 Sv, 5.23). That ended his time in the Twins chain. The Australian Baseball League was re-launched in the winter of 2010-2011 and Matthew was 0-2 with a 2.30 ERA for the Sydney Blue Sox. He was excellent for Sydney in 2011-2012 (1-0, Sv, 1.23 ERA, .89 WHIP).
In 2012-2013, he was 1-0 again with a 2.14 ERA, .95 WHIP, 28 K in 21 innings and 15 saves, breaking former major leaguer Dae-sung Koo's ABL save record by three. The mark stood for four years before Ryan Searle topped it. He led the league in saves by four over Sean Toler.
Williams was a member of the Australian national team in the 2013 World Baseball Classic. In his lone outing, he relieved Brad Thomas in the 8th against South Korea with a 5-0 deficit. He allowed two hits and retired two batters before Ryan Rowland-Smith relieved him.
Moving to the Adelaide Bite for 2013-2014, he was 3-5 with 8 saves and a 2.89 ERA, walking only 9 in 43 2/3 innings. He tied Koo and Toler for third in the ABL in saves and also tied for third in games pitched. With Adelaide as a swingman in 2014-2015, he was 3-2 with two saves and a 3.72 ERA. He fanned 64, third in the league behind Searle and Morgan Coombs. In 2015-2016, he was 3-5 with a save and a 4.22 ERA for the Bite. He tied for fifth in the league in losses.
- Flintoff & Dunn Australian Baseball Almanac
- Australian Baseball Federation
- 2008 Twins Media Guide
- Defunct IBAF site
- ABL website on Williams' save record
- ABL article on Searle breaking Williams' save mark
- ABL player bio
- Wayback Machine archive of old World Baseball Classic website