Baltimore Orioles: Mason Williams Joins List Of Roster Moves
Outfielder Mason Williams has been removed from the Baltimore Orioles 40-man roster.
It appears that one more name can be added to yesterday’s news of roster moves for the Baltimore Orioles. As pointed out by MLB Trade Rumors, outfielder Mason Williams has been removed from the Orioles 40-man roster. His MiLB.com player page confirms the transaction.
Williams joins a list of RHP Ryan Eades, LHP Luis Ortiz, RHP Tayler Scott, and LHP Josh Rodgers who have all been outrighted to Triple-A Norfolk. Rodgers was on the 60-day Injured List and not on the 40-man, but the removal of the rest of this list, along with Mark Trumbo who becomes a free agent today, the O’s roster currently sits at 37 players.
A former top prospect with the New York Yankees and Cincinnati Reds, Williams was signed in late-March to a minor league free agent deal to add depth to the Orioles outfield. He spent nearly the entire season in Triple-A Norfolk where he proved to be one of the more productive hitters in the International League.
Across 121 games Williams slashed .308/.371/.477 with 18 home runs, 15 doubles, and 67 RBI. Taking control of center field at Harbor Park can be a difficult task, but Williams held his own defensively, routinely showcasing the athleticism that originally made him such an intriguing prospect.
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While the Orioles cycled through Cedric Mullins, Keon Broxton, Stevie Wilkerson, and Anthony Santander in center, Mason Williams sat in Triple-A. Despite his impressive numbers, it says a lot when the Orioles decided to go with someone who had never played center field in his life over Williams.
He finally earned an opportunity in early-September, but a knee injury after crashing into the outfield wall limited Williams to just 11 games. He was 8-30 (.267) in his brief stint.
Without much playing time at the major league level, Williams was not able to capitalize on his opportunity to take the center field job in Baltimore, a role seemingly claimed by Austin Hays with his electric September play.
Update: Since publishing, the Baltimore Orioles have announced that Mason Williams has elected free agency instead of accepting an assignment to Norfolk.
Now 28, you have to imagine that the door is starting to close on Williams, especially after a third failed attempt to succeed in the majors. Despite his removal from the 40-man, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Orioles try and bring back Williams on another minor league deal.