Angels claim catcher Jackson Williams off waivers from Rockies
The Los Angeles Angels managed to sneak in a roster move without making any sort of major announcement during the World Series, claiming catcher Jackson Williams off of waivers from the Colorado Rockies on Wednesday. MLB.com’s Alden Gonzalez was the first to report the pick-up.
The 28-year-old backstop was a first round selection of the San Francisco Giants in the 2007 amateur draft out of the University of Oklahoma and spent the first six seasons of his professional career playing in the Giants organization before topping out at Triple-A Fresno in 2013. The Giants granted him free agency that winter and he spent 2014 with the Colorado Rockies Triple-A affiliate in Colorado Springs. Overall, the 28-year-old has posted a fairly meager .223/.309/.337 batting line over the course of 8 minor league seasons.
However, he did improve drastically in the thin Colorado air in 2014, slashing .256/.353/.368 with 4 home runs and 34 RBI in 72 games with the Sky Sox last season. That earned Williams his first cup of coffee with the Rockies in late August, early September and the rookie launched his first career home run on September 5th. That improvement may have played a part in the Angels having some interest in the catcher, but as Eric Kay tweeted, there may also be a bit of nepotism in the decision-making process.
It never hurts to have such important friends in the organization, but it is doubtful that Williams will serve as much more than organizational depth at a position that you can never have too much of. Additionally, a knee injury will start Williams’ tenure with the Angels on the 60-day disabled list, meaning that he won’t take up a 40-man roster spot at this time. Once available though, the Angels will likely try to sneak him through waivers so that he can assume a role at Triple-A Salt Lake to begin the season.