Hall of Fame manager Dick Williams, who led the Oakland A’s to two of their three 1970s World Series championships and led the 1967 Red Sox and 1984 Padres to pennants, died of a brain aneurysm at his home in Las Vegas today. He was 82.
In 21 years of managing, Williams won 1571 games to 1451 losses. In addition to his pennant-winning teams he managed the California Angels, the Montreal Expos and the Seattle Mariners. He was fired from his last big league job 56 games into the 1988 season.
His signature as a manager? Turning losers into winners. He was at the helm for quick turnarounds in Boston, Oakland, Montreal and San Diego. He was a versatile manager, winning with different kinds of teams and different kinds of rosters.
He was a colorful manager, who had a good bit of confidence in himself and would, on a number of occasions, clash with upper management, most notably Charlie Finely in Oakland. Despite that, he wears an A’s cap on his Hall of Fame plaque.
An extremely thorough biography of Williams can be read here.
Update (12:58 AM ET): Per Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle, Samardzija has been diagnosed with a strained pectoral muscle. He’ll be shut down for a week. That’s good news for the Giants, considering the alternatives.
Giants starter Jeff Samardzija will undergo an MRI on his ailing right shoulder, according to NBC Sports Bay Area. The right-hander struggled in a minor league game on Wednesday, surrendering a pair of home runs and hitting a batter. Overall this spring, Samardzija has given up 15 runs (13 earned) on 17 hits (six homers) and seven walks with seven strikeouts in 11 innings.
This may mean Samardzija won’t be ready for the start of the regular season. Derek Holland would likely replace Samardzija in the rotation. Holland had been competing for the No. 5 spot in the Giants’ rotation.
Samardzija led the National League in losses last season with 15, also posting a 4.42 ERA with a 205/32 K/BB ratio in a league-high 207 2/3 innings. Since becoming a starter, Samardzija has been able to avoid injury, making 32 or 33 starts in each of the last five seasons.