Blue Jays have Matt Williams on radar in managerial search
Diamondbacks 3rd base coach, former major leaguer ready to become manager
General manager Alex Anthopoulos’s anticipated "short list" of candidates to become the Toronto Blue Jays’ 13th field manager appears to be growing.
Arizona on Monday reportedly gave the Blue Jays permission to interview the Diamondbacks third base coach, current manager in the Arizona Fall League and former major leaguer.
The book on Matt Williams
- Age: 46
- Team: Arizona Diamondbacks
- Position: 3rd base coach
- Contract: Signed through 2012
- Coaching history: 2007 — Interim manager, Mobile Baybears (D-backs’ AA affiliate); 2010 — 1st base coach (Ariz.).
- Major league career: 17 seasons with San Francisco, Cleveland and Arizona.
- Drafted: By San Francisco third overall in 1986 amateur draft.
- Career highlights:
- Appeared in three World Series, winning in 2001 with Arizona, and is only player to hit at least one Series homer for three different teams.
- Ranks among Diamondbacks career batting leaders (minimum 300 games) in RBIs (381, 3rd), home runs (99, 4th), total bases (1,067, 4th), hits (629, 6th), doubles (127, 6th) and slugging percentage (.471, T-6th).
- Posted .268 batting average with 997 runs, 1,878 hits, 338 doubles, 35 triples, 378 home runs and 1,218 runs batted in over 1,866 games.
- Finished top 10 in league MVP voting three times.
- Personal: Married to Erika and share four children – daughters Alysha, Rachael and Madison and son Jacob.
— Compiled by Doug Harrison, CBCSports.ca
Anthopoulos is also believed to have received permission to speak to Los Angeles Dodgers third base coach Tim Wallach, while former Cleveland interim manager Sandy Alomar Jr., Baltimore third base coach DeMarlo Hale and Blue Jays coaches Don Wakamatsu and Brian Butterfield are also considered to be in the running.
Williams, a four-time Gold Glove winner at third base during a 17-year major league career, has already interviewed for the Colorado Rockies managerial opening.
"[Managing] is what I want to do," the 46-year-old Williams told FOX Sports Arizona on Monday. "Who knows if it will ever happen, but … you want to be prepared if it does happen."
Williams has been the Diamondbacks’ third base coach the past two seasons after serving as the first base coach in 2010.
Previously, he worked with the team’s broadcast crew from 2005-09, serving as a colour analyst on select broadcasts.
Most of Williams’s 17 years as a major league player were spent with San Francisco. He also had stints in Cleveland and Arizona, where he won a World Series in 2001.
The five-time all-star finished his career in 2003 with 378 home runs.
When asked of his managerial style, Williams said he is aggressive in all aspects of the game.
"Pitching, aggressive within the strike zone, aggressive with fastball command," he said. "On defence, running bunt plays or turning the double play. You need to be aggressive on the field. I think that’s important."
The Blue Jays released manager John Farrell from his contract earlier this month after two seasons and subsequently worked out a trade to allow him to join the Boston Red Sox in the same role.
Farrell also believed in an aggressive style of play. He helped instill a more aggressive approach on the basepaths in Toronto, but inconsistent pitching, injuries and repeated mistakes running the bases were constant issues.