Time for another exciting episode of "Whatever happened to that guy?" Today's contestant is pitcher Matt Williams. This Matt Williams should not be confused with third baseman Matt Williams.
We see Matt today on his 1986 ProCards Eighty Niners card. This set is unnumbered. Looking at the front of the card we can deduce that Matt is a pitcher and throws right-handed. Flipping the card over we see that he is listed at 6-1 and 200 pounds. There is only one year of stats listed for Matt on this card, his 1985 year. Looks like he played for three different teams that year. To take a closer look we turn to the Baseball-reference.com.
Looks like Matt was drafted by the Blue Jays in the first round of the 1981 draft. He spent the 1981 season playing A ball for the Jays and moved up to Double A the next season. After a promotion to Triple A in 1983, things seemed to be looking up. In August of 1983 Matt finally got the call. He appeared in four games for the Blue Jays and went 1-1. Unfortunately, he also posted a 14.62 ERA in eight innings. Apparently the Jays thought he needed more polishing so he spent the 1984 season back in Triple A.
After starting the 1985 season in Triple A for Toronto, Matt was traded to the Rangers who promptly assigned him to Triple A. He pitched a mere four innings there before getting called up to Arlington. In his second Major League stint he appeared in six games and tossed 26 innings while posting a 2.42 ERA. His record was 2-1 with 22 strikeouts to 10 walks.
A record like that makes me wonder what happened the following year when he started back in Triple A. One year with OKC and he was done at age 26. So, what happened to pitcher Matt Williams? An injury? Was his stint with Texas a fluke? Were the Rangers concerned that two pitchers named Williams (Mitch Williams would debut in 1986) would be confusing?