Rick Williams (coach)
Richard Anthony Williams
- Bats Left, Throws Left
- Height 6' 1", Weight 205 lb.
- School University of South Alabama
The son of legendary manager Dick Williams, Rick Williams was signed by the Montréal Expos out of college, where he was coached by Eddie Stanky. Rick went 3-1 with a 2.90 ERA for the 1977 GCL Expos (completing 3 of 4 starts) and 1-0 in four innings for the Jamestown Expos. Jumping to AA with the Memphis Chicks, Williams was not outclassed, as he went 7-4 with three saves and a 1.78 ERA. He allowed 60 hits and 21 walks in 86 innings, completed 8 of 11 starts and threw four shutouts, one less than league leader Roger Alexander. Williams would have edged Alexander for the Southern League ERA lead but did not qualify in terms of innings pitched as he was promoted to AAA. With the Denver Bears, Rick struggled, going 1-1 with a 9.41 ERA. He allowed 34 hits, 6 homers and 13 walks while striking out only 7 in 22 innings.
Williams returned to Memphis in 1979 and went 5-7 with five saves and a 3.31 ERA, allowing 46 hits but 44 walks in 68 innings. He made 28 relief appearances and five starts. An arm injury derailed his career. In 1980, Rick was just 1-2 with one save and an ERA of 8.61 for Memphis, allowing 39 hits and 15 walks in 23 innings. In four games for the West Palm Beach Expos, he allowed 9 hits and five runs in four innings of work.
He later spent several seasons as a big league coach, including as the first pitching coach in the history of the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, from 1998 to 2000. As of 2005, he was special assistant to the general manager for the Devil Rays. His biography on the Devil Rays website said:
"Rick has managed, coached and played in all four major winter leagues, and was a part of two Caribbean Championship clubs."
After leaving the Rays' organization, he spent seven years as a scout for the New York Yankees. In 2014, he was hired by the Atlanta Braves as a special assistant to the General Manager for pitching development.
Sources include 1978-1981 Baseball Guides