Jerome Williams returning to the majors with the Angels for the first time since 2007 is a pretty interesting story, but Sam Miller of the Orange County Register investigated something about the one-time Giants prospect that’s even more interesting.
Apparently when Williams first arrived in the big leagues as a 21-year-old rookie in 2003 the Giants coaching staff and various teammates thought his name was Jeremy. And when they repeatedly called him by the wrong name Jerome didn’t correct them … for two years.
Miller broached the topic with Williams yesterday, leading to a highly amusing exchange. Here’s an excerpt:
“Yeah. They called me Jeremy. I just rolled with it.”
They just called you Jeremy? Were you called Jerome growing up?
“I don’t know. In the minors, they didn’t call me Jeremy. When I got to the big leagues they called me Jeremy for two years.”
Were they screwing with you?
“No, they just called me that. I just rolled with it. I was a rookie and I didn’t want to tell anybody cause I was scared.”
You mean that whole time, (pitching coach Dave) Righetti was calling you Jeremy?
(Manager) Felipe Alou?
“Felipe never really called me by my name. He was just like ‘hey guy come here guy.’ Every time I was ‘guy.’ But yeah, some – most — of the guys did call me that.”
The conversation between Miller and Williams got so absurd that Trevor Bell started cracking up in the next locker over. And how did it finally end?
“I just told Righetti one day. I’m doing a bucket, and I’m like Rags, we need to talk about something. He’s like, ‘What?’ Ummmm. What’s my name? He’s like, ‘Jeremy.’ Ummmm. No. It’s not, actually. It’s actually Jerome. He’s like, ‘so for a couple years I’ve been calling you Jeremy and it’s not even your name? Why didn’t you correct me?’ I told him the same: I was scared. ‘What were you scared about?’ I don’t know. And he slapped me.
Sounds about right.