Jerome Williams dominated the slumping Athletics on Saturday afternoon, tossing seven shutout innings to lower his ERA with the Phillies to 2.45 over eight starts. The Royals lost to the Tigers earlier and the Mariners are just underway against the Astros, to the Athletics maintain a narrow 0.5-game lead for the first of two AL Wild Card spots.
Williams’ win was a baseball first in an odd way. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Williams became the first pitcher to beat the same team three times in a season, each with a different team. Williams won against the Athletics as a member of the Astros on April 26, and defeated them again as a member of the Rangers on July 25.
The Rangers have signed catcher Jeff Mathis to a two-year contract, per Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic. The deal is pending a physical.
Mathis turns 36 years old at the end of March and has a career .564 OPS across 14 seasons, but he is well-regarded for his defense and ability to handle a pitching staff.
The arrival of Mathis could mean the Rangers are moving on from Robinson Chirinos behind the plate, as he is now a free agent. The Rangers could go after another catcher to complement Mathis or just have Isiah Kiner-Falefa back up Mathis. Though Kiner-Falefa mostly played elsewhere, including three spots across the infield, he did rack up over 300 defensive innings behind the plate in 2018.